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UPDATE: Paradigm Delivers Herbicide Assays to Bayer

This story has been updated from a previous version.

NEW YORK, Dec 5 – Paradigm Genetics said Tuesday it had provided new assays for identifying novel classes of herbicides to Bayer, marking a milestone in the companies’ previously announced collaboration.

Under the terms of the original five-year deal, Bayer contracted Paradigm to decipher the genetic code of weeds in exchange for $40 million in milestone payments. Paradigm will receive additional payments on any products Bayer produces based on the information.

Athanasios Maroglou, vice president for project management at Paradigm, said it searches for novel genes in Arabidopsis as well as other model plant organisms and then studies these genes to determine function as well as to create a metabolic profile. The company then delivers its findings to Bayer on 384 well plates that can be run through the company’s high-throughput screening facility.

Bayer has said it expects to be able to run assays for some 200,000 substances a day in its soon-to-be-completed facility in the Monheim Agricultural Center in Germany.

Since forming the collaboration more than two years ago, Paradigm has provided Bayer with a screening assay as well as two versions of its FunctionFinder bioinformatics system, which allows researchers to collect, store, and analyze information.

Paradigm of Research Triangle Park, NC, develops processes for gene function discovery in the areas of human health, nutrition, crop production, and industrial products. The company has so far only penned deals in the crop production field, although a company spokeswoman said Paradigm was currently negotiating deals in the other areas too.

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