Source: Wageningen University

Recognizing the fundamental research work from the Plant Sciences Group of Wageningen UR (University & Research centre) and the applied capabilities from Biogemma, these two partners  announced a collaboration in research and development for drought tolerance in wheat.

Due to climate change and ever more limiting resources, the development of more stress resistant crops to cope with changing conditions is an important research topic for many R&D groups and Ag-Seed companies.

Biogemma CEO Pascual Perez explains: "Creating innovative GM and non GM trait solutions for our stakeholders contributing to solve global agricultural challenges is our main task. With the ever increasing emphasis on limiting water use and predicted increasingly dry summers, it is essential to improve this aspect in our main crops. The license agreement with Wageningen UR allows us to reinforce our wheat trait portfolio with a number of drought tolerance genes. Wheat is one of the world's most important crops often grown in semi-arid conditions."

Richard Visser, Professor in Plant Breeding at Wageningen University, added that "finding solutions to enable sustainable and high crop production under adverse conditions such as drought is a challenge and does ask for combined efforts and expertises. This license agreement between Biogemma and Wageningen UR for wheat will strengthen our collaboration and will also guarantee that the knowledge and expertise obtained in our genomics-based research programmes will be applied by the plant breeding industry."

The agreement is built around the use of genes identified in model species for wheat. "This type of collaboration is an essential part of the Biogemma strategy, as it allows the rapid valorisation of high-grade public research and gives us a head-start in choosing the best solutions to our breeding and agronomic problems," said Jeroen Wilmer, Biogemma licensing and portfolio manager.