Cibus, Inc., a leading agricultural technology company that develops and licenses Non-GMO plant traits to seed companies, today announced that it has entered into a U.S. Development Agreement with Loveland Products Inc., a subsidiary of Nutrien Ltd. Cibus has agreed to collaborate with Loveland Products to provide traits into Loveland’s elite rice seed genetics.
Under the terms of the agreement Loveland and Cibus will work toward commercializing herbicide tolerance in rice with a focus on the southern U.S. market, where demand for novel approaches in weed control is most prevalent.
“Loveland Products is constantly striving to bring innovative solutions to the marketplace across the agricultural industry,” says Rob Dunlop, Vice President of North America seed at Nutrien. “We are excited to collaborate with Cibus to help address some of the most pressing weed management challenges of U.S. rice growers.”
“We are thrilled to work with the Loveland Products and Dyna-Gro teams to deliver new herbicide management options to rice growers,” stated Norm Sissons, Senior Vice President Commercial at Cibus. “Importantly, our recent results using our Trait Machine to add traits like herbicide tolerance in rice show we can provide collaborators with new traits in their elite genetics on an accelerated timescale.”
About the Cibus RTDS-Based High Throughput Breeding System
A key element of Cibus’ technology breakthrough is its High Throughput Breeding Process (referred to as the Trait Machine system). The Trait Machine process is a crop specific application of Cibus’ patented Rapid Trait Development System (RTDS). The proprietary technologies in RTDS integrate crop specific cell biology platforms with a series of gene editing technologies to enable a system of end-to-end crop specific precision breeding. It is the core technology platform for Cibus’ Trait Machine: the first standardized end-to-end semi-automated crop specific gene editing system that directly edits a seed company’s elite germplasm. Each Trait Machine process requires a crop specific cell biology platform that enables Cibus to edit a single cell from a customers’ elite germplasm and grow that edited cell into a plant with the Cibus edits. Cibus has Trait Machine platforms developed for canola and rice and has already begun transferring their elite germplasm with Cibus edits back to customers.
The traits from Cibus’ RTDS-based High Throughput Breeding System are indistinguishable from traits developed using conventional breeding or from nature. RTDS does not integrate any foreign DNA or transgenes. Under the European Commission current proposals, it is expected that products from Cibus’ RTDS gene editing platform such as its pod shatter reduction trait and Sclerotinia resistance traits for Canola and Winter Oilseed Rape would be considered ‘Conventional-like’.
Cibus believes that RTDS and the Trait Machine process represent the technological breakthrough in plant breeding that is the ultimate promise of plant gene editing: High Throughput Gene Editing Systems operating as an extension of seed company breeding programs.
Cibus, Loveland Products Collaborate to Develop and Sell Rice Traits in the U.S.
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Author: Matt Hopkins