Leads Efforts for Discovery of Regulatory Elements to Modulate Photosynthesis for Enhancing Crop Productivity, Undertakes Plant Proof of Concept Validation, & Potentially Leads Commercialization
Rehovot, Israel – April 19, 2016 – Evogene Ltd. (NYSE; TASE: EVGN), a leading company for the improvement of crop productivity and economics for the food feed and biofuel industries,
announced today that it is participating in a consortium for research in photosynthesis within the EU Horizon 2020 Program for Research and Innovation. Academic participants include the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology and the Institute of Terrestrial Microbiology, Weizmann Institute of Science, and the Imperial College of Science Technology and Medicine. The consortium’s research program is focused on an innovative approach to modulate photosynthesis related pathways aiming to improve photosynthetic efficiency.
Evogene, the only commercial entity in this consortium, will lead the efforts for discovery of regulatory elements required for pathway modulation and undertake in plant proof of concept validation, as well as potentially lead commercialization. The consortium will receive a grant of approximately 5 million Euros for the program in total, Evogene will receive 902,000 Euro from this amount for its participation in the consortium.
Ofer Haviv, Evogene’s President and CEO commented: “Evogene is very proud to be a key member of this prestigious consortium addressing a fundamental and critical aspect of ag-biology, further demonstrating the recognition of our expertise and ability to bring innovation to agriculture. This capability rests on our unique technology platform, combining proprietary scientific understanding and advanced computational technologies to utilize agriculture big-data. We are confident that our participation will both be of significant value to the research being undertaken by the consortium and enable Evogene to establish novel expertise in photosynthesis as a means of yield improvement, thus adding to our world leading scientific expertise in traits for enhancing crop productivity”.
Dr. Arren Bar-Even of the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology, the coordinator of the consortium added: “Feeding 10-15 billion people at the end of this century is a tremendously challenging task that will only be met by the implementation of drastic measures to increase agricultural productivity. We try to tackle this challenge by using state-of-the-art synthetic biology tools to design, evolve, and implement highly efficient carbon fixation routes. The project comprises an interdisciplinary effort that integrates diverse skills in computational biology, chemistry, biochemistry, microbiology and plant physiology”.
About Evogene Ltd.:
Evogene (NYSE, TASE: EVGN) is a leading biotechnology company for the improvement of crop productivity. The Company has developed a proprietary innovative technology platform, leveraging scientific understanding & computational technologies to harness Ag ‘Big Data’ for developing improved seed traits (via: GM and non-GM approaches), as well as innovative ag-chemical and novel ag-biological products. Evogene has strategic collaborations with world-leading agricultural companies like: BASF, Bayer, DuPont, Monsanto and Syngenta, focusing on innovative crop enhancement and crop protection solutions. For more information, please visit www.evogene.com.
About Horizon 2020.:
Horizon 2020 is the EU Framework Program for Research and Innovation. Horizon 2020 is the biggest EU Research and Innovation program with nearly €80 billion of funding available over 7 years (2014 to 2020). It promises more breakthroughs, discoveries and world-firsts by taking great ideas from the lab to the market. The FET Open program in which the Consortium participates is a program that supports the early-stages of the science and technology research and innovation around new ideas towards radically new future technologies. It also funds coordination and support actions for such high-risk forward looking research to prosper in Europe.
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