Syngenta Teams Up with IBM and Maxygen to Revolutionize Agricultural Technology

Syngenta Teams Up with IBM and Maxygen to Revolutionize Agricultural Technology

(IN BRIEF) Syngenta Group, a leading global agriculture technology company, has announced key collaborations stemming from its innovation accelerator platform, Shoots by Syngenta, launched in 2023. These collaborations involve partnerships with IBM Research and US biotech firm Maxygen, aiming to revolutionize chemical synthesis optimization and enhance molecular enabling technology, respectively. The partnerships leverage cutting-edge methodologies to address agricultural challenges efficiently. Additionally, Syngenta is seeking new collaborators for six challenges through Shoots by Syngenta, inviting scientific minds to contribute innovative solutions.

(PRESS RELEASE) BASEL, 29-Feb-2024 — /EuropaWire/ — Syngenta AG, a global agricultural technology company active in the production of agrochemicals and seeds, is pleased to announce significant partnerships stemming from the inception of its innovation accelerator, Shoots by Syngenta, in 2023. These collaborations, spanning diverse industries and sectors, are poised to expedite the development of innovative solutions to agricultural challenges, enhancing efficiency and speed in addressing critical issues.

Two notable collaborations, one with IBM Research and another with US biotech firm Maxygen, have united pioneering methodologies in data-driven predictive modeling and protein evolution with Syngenta’s renowned agricultural research and proprietary datasets.

Gusui Wu, Global Head of Seeds Research, emphasized the vital role of collaboration, stating, “Helping growers sustainably feed a rapidly growing human population requires a strong collaboration focus, not just across agriculture but across industries. Collaboration is at the heart of how our scientists approach innovation every day. It is embedded in our scientific culture, and we are continually seeking out different technologies, solutions, and partners to help us better serve farmers.”

IBM Research and Syngenta Spearhead Chemical Synthesis Optimization with Language Models

In collaboration with IBM Research, Syngenta Group has revolutionized chemical synthesis productivity utilizing IBM-RXN software. This software harnesses language models to predict chemical reactivity, combining Syngenta’s expertise in chemistry research and proprietary datasets with IBM’s reactivity modeling capabilities, powered by Natural Language Processing (NLP). This collaboration enables scalable, precise, data-driven predictive modeling, facilitating the investigation of multiple compounds simultaneously and prioritizing routes with optimal commercial attributes.

Syngenta has established a seamless integration between the IBM-RXN platform and its synthesis platform, incorporating reactivity predictions into synthetic procedure design. This digitalization of synthetic workflows and adoption of predictive modeling enhance efficiency and effectiveness, with a focus on sustainability and safety. The collaboration also extends reactivity modeling to include bio-catalyzed reactions and metabolic transformations, supporting the development of environmentally friendly synthetic procedures.

Maxygen and Syngenta Forge Collaboration to Enhance Molecular Enabling Technology

Syngenta Seeds has partnered with US biotech company Maxygen, renowned for its expertise in protein evolution, to optimize molecular enabling technologies. This collaborative effort has been characterized by robust scientific engagement and an open collegiate approach from both parties. The alignment of priorities and frequent collaboration meetings has facilitated rapid progress, resulting in the creation of protein variants with superior attributes and novel intellectual property.

Six Challenges Await New Collaborators

Shoots by Syngenta invites scientific minds from academia, research institutes, start-ups, and cross-industry sectors to tackle specific innovation needs within Syngenta Crop Protection and Seeds businesses. Challenges, ranging from biomass-derived chemical building blocks to diagnostic tools for crop health, are posted on the Shoots by Syngenta website. Proposals are swiftly evaluated, with promising ideas progressing to collaboration partnerships for further research or potential licensing opportunities.

Camilla Corsi, Syngenta’s Global Head of Crop Protection Research, expressed enthusiasm about engaging with new partners to push scientific boundaries and benefit agriculture. “We’re looking forward to connecting with new partners from academia, research institutes, start-ups, and cross-industry sectors, to work with our extensive global network of scientists and to push the boundaries of what is known today in science. We’re proud of our strong reputation as a collaborator of choice and are excited about the potential of the Shoots by Syngenta platform to generate new possibilities to benefit farmers and agriculture.”

About Syngenta Group 

Syngenta Group is one of the world’s biggest agricultural technology companies, with roots going back more than 250 years. With more than 59,000 employees, operating in more than 100 countries, the company strives to transform agriculture with science-driven, technological innovations to deliver high productivity and high-quality food while fighting climate change and restoring nature. Syngenta Group is working with farmers to enable Regenerative Agriculture – an outcome-based food production system that nurtures and restores soil health, protects the climate and water resources and biodiversity, and enhances farms’ productivity and profitability. Syngenta Group, which is registered in Shanghai, China, and has its management headquarters in Switzerland, draws strength from its four business units:  Syngenta Crop Protection, headquartered in Switzerland; Syngenta Seeds, headquartered in the United States; ADAMA®, headquartered in Israel; and Syngenta Group China. Together, these businesses provide industry-leading ways to serve customers around the world.

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This document may contain forward-looking statements, which can be identified by terminology such as “expect,” “would,” “will,” “potential,” “plans,” “prospects,” “estimated,” “aiming,” “on track” and similar expressions. Such statements may be subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause the actual results to differ materially from these statements. For Syngenta Group, such risks and uncertainties include risks relating to legal proceedings, regulatory approvals, new product development, increasing competition, customer credit risk, general economic and market conditions, compliance and remediation, intellectual property rights, implementation of organizational changes, impairment of intangible assets, consumer perceptions of genetically modified crops and organisms or crop protection chemicals, climatic variations, fluctuations in exchange rates and/or grain prices, single source supply arrangements, political uncertainty, natural disasters, and breaches of data security or other disruptions of information technology. Syngenta Group assumes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect actual results, changed assumptions or other factors.

SOURCE: Syngenta AG

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