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NRGene, RCK Partner to Develop Medical Cannabis DNA Biomarkers

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb) — NRGene said today that it has partnered with Israeli cannabis production company RCK to develop DNA-based biomarkers for medical cannabis breeding and strain identification.

Under the terms of the deal, the partners will use NRGene's computational tools to develop the biomarkers for commercial use. Additional terms were not disclosed.

"Today, no reliable method exists to distinguish among cannabis strains, so the quality and purity of the produced material is uncertain," RCK Chief Technology Officer Noam Chehanovsky said in a statement. "As the plant is grown for medical treatment, and different strains are used to treat different medical conditions, it is crucial we ensure the strain's identity, [and the] quality and efficacy of every batch of the medical cannabis produced."

Earlier this year, Syngenta licensed NRGene's GenoMagic cloud-based genome analysis platform for use in crop molecular breeding and genomic selection. Ness Ziona, Israel-based NRGene also has formed agricultural partnerships for its genome assembly and analysis technologies with Illumina and Monsanto.