KeyGene announced that it has been issued a U.S. patent titled “High Throughput Screening of Mutagenized Populations,” as of December 24, 2013.

The patent protects methods for detecting induced and natural genetic variation in large plant populations, which form the cornerstone of KeyGene’s KeyPoint MB programs. The issuance of the U.S. patent follows earlier grants in Australia, Europe, Japan and the People’s Republic of China, securing broad patent protection for the methods in important areas for crop improvement.

KeyPoint MB delivers genetic variation in important crop traits such as yield, (a)biotic stress resistances and plant reproduction. KeyPoint MB has enabled KeyGene to produce pre-breeding materials for canola, corn, soybean, wheat and a number of vegetable crops within timeframes of months and in an unrivaled cost effective way, according to KeyPoint management. Application of KeyPoint MB does not fall under GMO legislation, thereby leading to further cost savings and broadening the application space of KeyPoint MB for genetic improvement of a wide variety of crops, it was further announced.

The KeyPoint MB technology is protected by patents and patent applications owned by KeyGene N.V. KeyPoint is a registered trademark of KeyGene N.V. KeyGene is a privately owned, molecular genetics ag biotech company with a primary focus on the improvement of what it calls the 6F (food, feed, fiber, fuel, flowers and fun) crops. KeyGene has a “Green Gene Revolution” approach to explore and exploit natural genetic variation in vegetable and other crops.

KeyGene performs applied research with more than 135 employees from around the world. KeyGene has its headquarters in Wageningen, The Netherlands, a subsidiary in Rockville, Md., and a joint lab with the Shanghai Institute of Biological Sciences in Shanghai, China.