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ECOGEN RECEIVES EPA EXEMPTION FOR FIELD EVALUATION OF RECOMBINANT BT STRAINS

 ECOGEN RECEIVES EPA EXEMPTION FOR FIELD EVALUATION
 OF RECOMBINANT BT STRAINS
 LANGHORNE, Pa., Aug. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Ecogen, Inc. (NASDAQ: EECN) today announced it has received clearance from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to evaluate recombinant strains of Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) in small-scale field trials without prior notification or seeking an experimental use permit before testing each strain.
 Under the generic EPA exemption, Ecogen will be able to immediately field test recombinant Bt strains it has already developed using the company's proprietary cloning vector system. Using this vector system, Ecogen can develop recombinant Bt strains that contain new combinations of Bt insecticidal genes but no foreign genetic information. Last year, the company received EPA approval to field test its first recombinant Bt strain without an experimental use permit. This strain, developed to control the Colorado potato beetle and certain caterpillar insects, has been found to be very effective in field trials performed during 1991 and 1992.
 Ecogen has already developed and is marketing second generation Bt products. These products, developed using techniques of plasmid curing and conjugal transfer, have already proven superior to non-improved native Bt strains marketed by others.
 Using the company's proprietary vector system, Ecogen expects to develop novel third generation Bt strains that are even more effective than its current products and control a broader spectrum of insect pests. Such products, if successfully developed, could result in an expanded market opportunity for Ecogen's Bt-products.
 "This EPA testing exemption significantly enhances Ecogen's Bt development program by allowing novel Bt strains with unique gene combinations to be quickly evaluated in the field. Such research allows us to develop new strains or alter existing strains to ensure that our Bt bioinsecticide products remain the most effective for control of important insect pests," said Dr. Bruce C. Carlton, executive vice president of research and development. "This, in essence, will enable Ecogen to remain a leader in the development of Bt-based bioinsecticide products."
 Ecogen Inc. is an agricultural biotechnology company specializing in biological pest control. Ecogen has developed and is marketing a number of novel and proprietary biopesticides, including Cutlass(R) bioinsecticide for vegetables, and tree, nut and vine crops; Condor(R) bioinsecticide for vegetables, cotton, and soybeans; Foil(R) potato bioinsecticide, Otinem(TM) bioinsecticide and Collego(R) rice bioherbicide. The company is also developing products for corn, home/garden and ornamental use as well as biofungicides including products for the control of powdery mildew and post harvest rot diseases.
 NOTE: Cutlass, Condor, Foil and Collego are trademarks of Ecogen Inc.
 -0- 8/5/92
 /CONTACT: Bruce C. Carlton, executive vice president-research & development of Ecogen, 215-757-1590; Donald C. Weinberger (investors) of Strategic Growth International, 212-826-9622; or Anthony J. Russo (media) of Noonan/Russo Communications, 212-979-9180, for Ecogen/
 (EECN) CO: Ecogen Inc. ST: Pennsylvania IN: MTC SU:


SM-SH -- NY015 -- 6975 08/05/92 09:53 EDT
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Date:Aug 5, 1992
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