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MYCOGEN ANNOUNCES DEVELOPMENT OF CORN PLANTS WITH NATIVE RESISTANCE TO CORN ROOTWORM

 SAN DIEGO, June 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Mycogen Corp. (NASDAQ: MYCO) announced today that scientists at its Agrigenetics plant science subsidiary have developed corn plants that resist feeding damage by corn rootworms, a major pest in corn production.
 Jerry Caulder, Mycogen's chairman, president and chief executive officer, said the company has filed for patent protection on the methods and discoveries involved in introducing rootworm-resistant genetic material from native corn plant sources into its elite commercial hybrids. He estimated that planting seeds carrying native resistance to corn rootworms could be available commercially within four to five years.
 "This is another important step in Mycogen's multifaceted effort to provide corn growers with environmentally compatible crop protection alternatives," Caulder said. "We intend to introduce a new generation of corn plants that can protect themselves from pests and reduce or eliminate the need to apply chemical pesticides."
 Last year, Agrigenetics announced that its scientists, through a collaborative program with researchers at Ciba Seeds, had identified and mapped native corn plant genes that confer resistance to European corn borer, another key pest. Mycogen plans to introduce hybrids with native first brood corn borer resistance under the Agrigenetics brand in 1994. Additionally, Mycogen has an active program to develop genetically enhanced corn hybrids with resistance to rootworms, corn borers and other pests, using biotoxins produced by a naturally occurring bacterium, Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt).
 In February, Mycogen obtained U.S. Environmental Protection Agency approval for commercial sale of M-Peril(TM) bioinsecticide, a topically applied, Bt-based product to control corn borers, and is now test marketing it throughout the Corn Belt.
 According to industry estimates, U.S. corn growers last year spent approximately $1.5 billion on planting seeds and more than $200 million on pesticides to protect corn plants from insect damage. Corn rootworm larvae feed on the roots of young corn plants, and adult beetles later damage corn silks when the plants pollinate. Farmers now attempt to control rootworm larvae by applying soil insecticides to more than 20 million acres of corn fields when the seeds are planted and later by spraying corn plants with pesticides to control adult beetles.
 "We think Mycogen can become a major factor in the corn industry over the next few years by bringing to farmers the benefits of biological crop protection technology, combined with high-yielding hybrids," Caulder said.
 Mycogen is a diversified agricultural biotechnology company that develops and markets environmentally compatible biopesticides and improved crop varieties to control pests and increase food and fiber production.
 -0- 6/10/93
 /CONTACT: Mike Sund, director of corporate communications of Mycogen, 619-453-8030/
 (MYCO)


CO: Mycogen Corp.; Agrigenetics ST: California IN: MTC CHM SU:

LS-JL -- SD005 -- 0452 06/10/93 08:32 EST
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Date:Jun 10, 1993
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