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Kultevat obtains license of gene switch technology.

ST. LOUIS, Sept. 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. biotech company Kultevat has strengthened its technology portfolio by signing an exclusive license for technology developed by the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center to control gene expression in plants, including for applications in production of natural rubber in Taraxicum species.

The technology was developed under the direction of Roger Beachy, Ph.D., chief science officer at Kultevat and former president of the Danforth Plant Science Center, and is used to introduce natural genetic elements to plants for the purpose of closely controlling seed maturation and germination. The gene switch technology controls expression of genes by use of a well-characterized chemical activator or by seed specific gene promoters that 'switch on' desired genes. The promoters control expression of genes that lead to production of plant hormones that regulate the timing of seed maturation and germination.

"The gene expression control strategies applied to innovations in Russian dandelion will significantly contribute to solving the worldwide need for increased natural rubber production and diversification of source. Until now the vast majority of natural rubber has been derived from a single source, the Hevea tree, which grows in only a few major production areas," said Daniel R. Swiger, CEO of Kultevat. "Kultevat is developing an additional source of rubber from TKS, a plant that can be grown to produce rubber in more than 42 states in the U.S."

About Kultevat Kultevat is a privately held company headquartered in St. Louis, MO. Kultevat serves sustainable agricultural markets, primarily by the production of rubber and mixed sugar feedstocks for the biofuels market. Kultevat has vast experience in the commercial utilization of plant materials to develop profitable, sustainable, and environmentally benign sources of rubber, while simultaneously supplying the biofuels industry. Kultevat serves to reduce near-total dependence on foreign sources of rubber globally. Visit

About Donald Danforth Plant Science Center Founded in 1998, the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is a nonprofit research institute with a mission to improve the human condition through plant science. Research aims to feed the hungry and improve human health, preserve and renew the environment and position the St. Louis region as a world center for plant science. The Danforth Center's work is funded through competitive grants and contract revenue from many sources, including the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Energy, National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Agency for International Development, the Bill & Melinda Gates and Howard G. Buffett Foundations. More information is available at,

For More Information Contact: Dan Swiger,, 760.315.2839 Melanie Bernds, 314.537.1647

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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Sep 18, 2014
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