Bayer has acquired German biotech start-up Targenomix. The spin-off of the Max Planck Institute for Molecular Plant Physiology (MPI MPP) uses novel systems biology and computational life science tools to identify new modes of action for crop protection compounds.
Targenomix will operate at arms-length and maintain a flexibility-focused business model, through which the company will continue to conduct crop protection research with a start-up mindset and agile culture.
According to Dr. Robert Reiter, head of R&D at Bayer’s crop science division, Targenomix has delivered numerous novel targets and modes of action for small molecules in weed control. “Their innovative tools to identify and select safe and sustainable compounds complement our design-based strategy in crop protection discovery and will accelerate the development of new products that farmers need to meet future challenges of agriculture.”
By further integrating Targenomix’ systems biology approach into Bayer’s established R&D pipeline, Bayer is driving the development of innovative new technologies towards safe and effective products that farmers need.
“Combining Bayer’s leading capabilities and proven crop protection pipeline with Targenomix’ flexible start-up mindset, deep multi-omics technology, and systems biology expertise will allow us jointly to continue to deliver novel modes of action,” said Dr. Sebastian Klie, CEO of Targenomix. “This new phase of our complementary relationship will accelerate the discovery of the next generation of sustainable and safe molecules.”
Bayer and Targenomix have been working together successfully since 2014, with the discovery and development of the industry’s first new post-emergence herbicide mode of action (MOA) for broadacre weed control in 30 years supported by the collaboration. This molecule has demonstrated effective control of key resistant grasses in research and is expected to be commercialized towards the end of this decade.
Photo: With the acquisition of Targenomix, Bayer wants to accelerate the discovery and development of promising molecules for plant protection (in the middle of the picture: Dr. Sebastian Klie, CEO of Targenomix).
Find out more about biocontrol and the science of biomes at New AG International's event 13-14 December, Biocontrol & Biomes, in Madrid, Spain, here.