Cannabis gene science through AI platform

Evogene is an Israeli seed company that uses research and development to improve crop performance. The company uses plant genomics and biotechnology to create plants and biofuels that carry desirable traits such as resistance to stress or pests. Evogene is transferring genes between plants from the same family rather using transgenics, or GMOs. Seed giant Monsanto has a stake in the company now traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

One of their inventions is a mini plant, a Lilliput plant, that let’s them grow tomato plants quicker so they can cycle through desirable plant qualities faster, and weed out what they don’t want.

Evogene is taking the knowledge accumulated from modern genome research with classical farming methods, such as crossbreeding, which is used to improve the positive qualities of plants. If, for example, a particular plant thrives on salty water, this property can be enhanced by breeding this trait so that it will grow in salty soil, like that of Israel’s Negev Desert.

The same approach can be taken to cannabis. And last month it announced it will open a new subsidiary called Canonic to develop next generation medical cannabis products. Evogene issued a report that it has been evaluating the medical cannabis field for more than a year, including market evaluation, obtaining governmental approvals for its research program and the establishment of a research facility, technology assessment and initial product line planning.

Canonic’s initial activities will focus on creating improved cannabis varieties by addressing the current developmental roadblocks of yield, stability and specific metabolite composition. These development efforts will be based on the utilization of Evogene’s big data software platform, which has in the past demonstrated success in addressing similar objectives for other crops.


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