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Ag-Bio Firm KeyGene Partners With Annogen to Study Non-Coding DNA in Plant Breeding

NEW YORK — KeyGene has partnered with Annogen to identify non-coding DNA fragments in crop plant genomes that influence key agricultural traits, the Dutch companies said on Wednesday.

Under the terms of the deal, the partners will use Annogen's SuRE technology, which screens entire genomes for mutations that affect the activity of promoters and enhancers, to support KeyGene's plant breeding programs.

Additional terms were not disclosed.

"Employing knowledge about non-coding DNA and about available and induced genetic variation in this part of plants' DNA may well lead to breakthrough technologies for crop improvement," KeyGene Co-CEO Arjen van Tunen said in a statement.

In mid-2019, researchers from Annogen's sister company Gen-X, a spinout of the Netherlands Cancer Institute, published data showing how the SuRE technology could be used to identify SNPs that impact regulatory activity.