(Formerly the Office of the Chief Scientist and MATIMOP)

Evogene and DBN partner to Improve Productivity in Rice

Evogene and DBN collaborate to improve productivity by increasing fertilizer uptake and drought tolerance in rice. 

The collaboration between Evogene - a plant genomics company specializing in enhancing crop productivity for the food, feed and biofuel industries, and Beijing Dabeinong Technology (DBN), a Chinese biotechnology company and part of the DBN Group , the sixth largest seed company in China, was announced in May 2013. The signing of the collaboration took place under the hospices of MATIMOP’s China - Israel Industrial R&D Cooperation framework, aimed at fostering collaborative technology-based R&D projects between Chinese and Israeli companies.

The collaboration between the two companies is focused on improving productivity by increasing fertilizer uptake and drought tolerance in rice.

Rice is one of the most important grains for human nutrition and caloric intake, providing more than one fifth of calories consumed worldwide. Over 50 percent of the world’s population is dependent upon rice for 80 percent of its nutrition. China is the world largest consumer and producer of rice, with approximately 25% of all world rice production. DBN Group's rice sales for 201 3 were $47 million.

"With China's need to support a fifth of the world's population with less than 10 percent of the world's arable land, it is clear that innovative technologies are required to minimize the gap and meet the growing demand for food," Evogene President and CEO Ofer Haviv said in a statement.

 “DBN’s position as one of the largest producers and marketers of seeds in China, provides credence to their capabilities in the commercialization of rice varieties containing improved traits,” said Assaf Oron, Evogene's EVP Strategy and Business Development  

Under the collaboration, candidate genes discovered and prioritized by Evogene for these key traits are introduced into DBN’s pipeline for the development of improved rice.  DBN is granted a license to candidate genes, identified and prioritized through Evogene’s ATHLETE™ computational technology and validated in model plants. DBN introduces and develops the licensed genes in rice as part of its R&D pipeline and holds the rights to commercialize rice incorporating these genes in China.

Since the signing of the agreement in May, Evogene has completed the gene discovery phase and DBN has begun the transformation process of the licensed genes into rice.

The collaboration with DBN is the second time Evogene has taken advantage of MATIMOP’s collaborations framework.  In 2006, Evogene approached MATIMOP to leverage its capabilities to locate potential partners for the development and marketing of new products in Europe, under the banner of the EUREKA program for collaboration in research and development. MATIMOP located a partner - French company Biogemma, for joint R&D with Evogene and oversaw the process of formulating the collaboration agreement.


About Evogene

Evogene is a plant genomics company, utilizing a proprietary integrated technology infrastructure to enhance seed traits underlying crop productivity. Evogene offers a complete solution for crop productivity improvement through biotechnology and advanced breeding using a unique technology infrastructure that is based on deep scientific understandings of plant genomics and proprietary computational capabilities. The Company has strategic collaborations with world-leading agricultural companies to develop improved seed traits in relation to yield and a-biotic stress (such as tolerance to drought), and biotic stress (such as resistance to disease), in key crops as corn, soybean, wheat and rice. In addition, Evogene has earlier stage operations in agriculture chemicals, and seeds focusing on second generation feedstock for biodiesel. The Company's headquarters are located in Rehovot, Israel and is listed for trading on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (TASE: EVGN) and on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: EVGN).


About DBN

DBN is a leading biotechnology company in China. DBN’s newly developed Biotech Center  specializes in novel gene discovery and evaluation, crop genetic transformation and commercial event selection to product development through its high through-put platforms, greenhouse facilities and crop field test centers. With the strong support from the Central Government and collaborations with many research institutes and companies, DBN is strategically positioning itself to be one of the important players in the global market in the industry. DBN, listed for trading on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange (SZ: 220385), is headquartered in Beijing, China. 




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