Monsanto and MIT Researchers Collaborate to Develop Ag Biologicals

Monsanto and two researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have established Preceres LLC to develop highly specific biological controls for damaging insect and weed pests.

Under the terms of the agreement, Preceres LLC will have access to technology licensed from MIT to develop delivery agents to support the development of innovative biological solutions for agriculture. The combined use of Preceres’ novel delivery discovery assets with Monsanto’s BioDirect technology has the potential to provide new biological options for sustainable pest, virus and weed control.

“The technology from MIT is centered on developing new materials for medicine,” said Dr. Daniel Anderson, associate professor in the Department of Chemical Engineering and the Institute of Medical Engineering and Science at MIT. “Working with Monsanto gives Preceres a unique opportunity to showcase methods developed to allow rapid synthesis, formulation, analysis and biological testing of large libraries of biomaterials for use in medical devices, cell therapy and drug delivery and apply them in a global agricultural context.

“Through this work we hope to demonstrate the broad applicability of our platform and the ability to apply our scientific discoveries to a critically important area of research.”

Anderson and Dr. Arturo Vegas, research associate at MIT, partnered with Monsanto to form Preceres.

“Part of our commitment to bringing new technologies to agriculture is also recognizing other innovators we can work with to deliver solutions for our farmer customers,” said Steve Padgette, Monsanto R&D investment strategy lead. “That’s why we look forward to working with this new collaboration, which will complement our own research capabilities.

“We have the potential to co-create products that are very precise and specific in how they work, which is consistent with our vision to create products that enable our customers to produce more in an environmentally sustainable way.”

Source – Monsanto

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