Biotech Updates

Origin Agritech Provides Update on Corn Seed R&D Programs

July 13, 2012

Origin Agritech Ltd, a technology-focused supplier of hybrid and genetically modified crop seeds in China, provided an update on corn seed R&D programs in China. On Origin's genetically modified phytase corn, it has passed all five phases of the GM approval process and received notification of Biosafety Certificate. The phytase trait has been incorporated in two best selling commercial hybrids and their commercialization is pending approval from the Chinese government. In the meantime, two additional corn hybrids with the phytase traits are undergoing variety production test.

GM phytase-producing corn will reduce the need for inorganic phosphate supplements as the phytase enzyme will allow release of phosphate from the phytic acid in the GM corn. The animals will directly absorb more phosphate from their feed, reducing animal feed's high cost.

Other updates on Origin's GM corn seeds since 2011 are:

  • Glyphosate Tolerance: One GM glyphosate tolerance event passed Phase 3 - Environment Release Test in 2011 and has received MOA's approval to begin Phase 4 - Production Test. Two more glyphosate tolerance events are being submitted for Phase 3 - Environment Release Test. In addition, more than one thousand events are undergoing Phase 1 - Laboratory Research;
  • Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt): Two insect tolerant events are going through Phase 2 - Intermediate Test. Over two hundred events are undergoing Phase 1 - Laboratory Research;
  • Glyphosate + Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt): As a result of recent successes in Phase 1 - Laboratory Research, six events of the Company's glyphosate and insect tolerant traits have advanced into Phase 2 - Intermediate Test. More than 4,500 events of the stacked traits (inserting more than one gene in a seed via biotechnology) are being screened in Phase 1 - Laboratory Research.
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