Bayer CropScience and Mendel Biotechnology Inc., Hayward, Calif., announced a new multi-year collaboration to jointly identify herbicides with novel modes of action. Increasing evidence of herbicide-resistant weeds in different geographies — including those resistant to multiple herbicide classes — has spurred renewed interest in the discovery of herbicides. Bayer CropScience, the global No. 2 in herbicides, will bring in its leading expertise in herbicide research and development. Together with Mendel’s deep knowledge of plant genetic regulatory networks (PGRNs) and its suite of proprietary genetic tools and assays for understanding plant development, this promising collaboration offers significant synergies.

"There is a major need in agriculture for herbicides acting through novel modes of action," said C. David Nicholson, Ph.D., global head of research and development at Bayer CropScience. "We believe that this collaboration will help us continue our significant contributions in agricultural chemistry and will further strengthen our partnering to cultivate new ideas and answers to help growers to tackle weed resistance issues and to protect their crops."

"We are excited to expand our partnership with Bayer CropScience into this new area of herbicide discovery," said Neal Gutterson, Ph.D., Mendel’s president and CEO. "This collaboration is recognition of the broad applicability of Mendel’s core technology platform and know-how in various fields across agriculture, and another important step toward realization of our new open architecture business strategy."