Monsanto Co. and ToolGen Inc., a biotechnology company specializing in genome editing, announced this week that they have reached a global licensing agreement for the use of ToolGen’s CRISPR technology platform to develop agricultural products.
ToolGen is an early pioneer in gene editing research. The license provides Monsanto with access to ToolGen’s comprehensive suite of CRISPR intellectual property for use in plants. This agreement further expands Monsanto’s broad portfolio of gene editing tools that can be used to develop improved and sustainable crops.
“We are excited to bring ToolGen’s CRISPR platform on board at Monsanto and are continuing to bolster and diversify our capabilities in this field of research,” said Dr. Tom Adams, vice president of biotechnology for Monsanto. “As a company, we remain committed to the development of safe, sustainable and high-quality crops and look forward to leveraging the CRISPR platform as we endeavor to meet the needs of farmers while answering consumer demand for food options.”
In order to grow more using less, farmers need a variety of seed choices to solve their local needs – like managing changing weather, fighting plant disease and pests and using crop inputs and natural resources wisely. The companies noted that gene editing technologies like CRISPR offer agricultural researchers significant advantages over existing plant breeding and biotechnology methods due to their versatility and efficiency and will allow Monsanto to provide farmers with solutions to problems that previously have not been addressed.
“We are pleased to announce our agreement with Monsanto, a global agriculture leader, and look forward to working together to build new and exciting opportunities in agriculture,” ToolGen chief executive officer Jongmoon Kim said. “This agreement further validates our platform and demonstrates the value that gene editing will hold for the future of both agriculture and biotechnology.”
Additional terms of the agreement were not disclosed.