Kayagene, a cannabis breeding company, and NRGene, agricultural genomics company, are collaborating on research to enhance Kayagene's breeding capabilities to develop improved cannabis varieties and more robust seed production.
The non-exclusive partnership between NRGene and Kayagene will accelerate development of cannabis varieties for hybrid seed production through stabilized lines. The companies will be working in tandem to sequence and assemble multiple genomes of diverse cannabis lines to enhance valuable traits, related to cultivation practices, overall cannabinoid profiles, and yields.
NRGene's DeNovoMAGIC 3.0 is used to develop high-quality, comprehensive genome assemblies of several varieties of cannabis to uncover and utilize the genetic variation of the species in a breeding program.
The genome assemblies will increase genetic gain using markers in selecting for valuable traits while reducing the time and space required for each cycle in the breeding program and providing means to validate and protect the IP of the new varieties.
The varieties of Kayagene will be tailored to customers' needs, including healthier, hardier plants that are optimal for production, as well as custom cannabinoid and terpenoid profiles. These metabolite profiles are key for targeting specific therapeutic uses, such as pain relief and sleep support, as well as providing unique flavor profiles for energy drinks, edibles, and recreational products.
"We are looking forward to utilizing NRGene's capabilities and experience in agricultural genome analytics to bring our cannabis breeding program to a new level, which will ultimately lead to significant variety improvement and benefit the company and the cannabis industry," said Dr. Christopher E. Hohn, Director of R&D, Kayagene. "This will quickly bring the most advanced molecular breeding capabilities previously found only in broad-acre crops to cannabis and close the gap of decades of clandestine breeding."
"The recognition of the importance of breeding new cannabis varieties is finally here, whether to fit large scale production, tailored to a specific medical treatment, or for other eco-friendly uses," said Dr. Gil Ronen, CEO of NRGene. "Cannabis is being increasingly recognized as the most viable solution for many health problems, and we're gratified that we can contribute to people's well-being."