BASF, Evogene collaborate on herbicide discovery and development

A three-year agreement was announced Tuesday between BASF and Evogene to collaborate on discovery and development of novel herbicides.

Evogene will identify chemicals that could be used for novel herbicides using a biology-driven computational discovery approach. The chemicals will then be screened by BASF’s proprietary advanced-plant platform to determine their biological effect on weeds. BASF will also be in charge of developing chemicals as deemed appropriate by the screening process.

“Weed resistance is a pressing issue for many growers across the world. Thus, establishing such a partnership to help us identify and develop herbicides with novel modes of action is more needed than ever before," Jordi Tormo, BASF Crop Protection's vice president for global research herbicides and services, said. "It is a great opportunity to combine Evogene’s expertise in plant physiology and computational biology with BASF’s strength in lead structure optimization and product development." 

BASF and Evogene are at the top of the industry when it comes to weed control portfolios and using biology to build upon what is already known to be useful to the companies.

"We see a significant opportunity for our company to provide novel biology-driven approaches for meeting key unmet commercial needs in the ag-chemical field," Evogene President and CEO Ofer Haviv said. "Therefore, we are extremely pleased and proud to have teamed with BASF in our initial efforts to identify promising candidates to serve as the basis for next-generation herbicides. We are confident that the combined knowledge and experience of the companies will lead to development of breakthrough solutions for this critical need.”

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