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Syngenta to expand use of NRGene crops’ software

Global seeds manufacturer will use Israeli plant genome discovery software to create better seeds

Shoshanna Solomon is The Times of Israel's Startups and Business reporter

Emmer wheat kernels (Courtesy)
Emmer wheat kernels (Courtesy)

Syngenta, the global agrochemical and seed company, said on Thursday it would use Israel’s NRGene‘s cloud-based software to faster and more comprehensively evaluate the trait discovery of a variety of crops.

Ness Ziona, Israel-based genomic big data company NRGene, which has mapped the genome for bread, pasta and wild emmer wheat, has developed software and algorithms to help firms quickly and efficiently study the genomes of the plants, to determine which seeds will better suit climatic conditions and which will have high resiliency, leading to more effective agriculture.

NRGene’s GenoMAGIC software analyzes unlimited volumes of genomic data, enabling scientists and breeders to relate certain genomic sequences with beneficial traits, making genomic selection and trait mapping much more productive. The software also enables breeders to process data more quickly, making breeding both faster and more cost effective. GenoMAGIC is being licensed non-exclusively to organizations involved in genetic research and breeding.

Syngenta said it continuously “evaluates, develops and adopts cutting-edge technologies, like GenoMagic,” to ensure the most relevant information is being used the right way to produce better-performing seeds more cost effectively.

“We were very pleased with our preliminary evaluations and are taking a more thorough look at the potential of GenoMAGIC in our research and development,” says Joseph Clarke, Syngenta’s principal research scientist. “The genetic diversity management strategies behind GenoMAGIC are a step above conventional means and enable clear value gains for downstream analytics, directly impacting cost and timeline models.”

Syngenta and NRGene have been collaborating for two years on genetic and breeding research, and Sygenta plans to expand the use of the software for broader value gains across the breeding process, Sygenta said.

“Syngenta’s broad and diverse data cataloged within GenoMAGIC will continue to make breeding much more productive and efficient,” said Gil Ronen, NRGene’s CEO.

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