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Valent BioSciences Licenses Improved Bt Toxin Testing Technology to Agdia; Faster, Consistent Identification of Widely Used Bt Toxins.

LIBERTYVILLE, Ill., July 17 /PRNewswire/ --

Valent BioSciences Corporation today announced it has licensed an improved diagnostic technology to identify specific Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) toxins in agricultural crops to Agdia, Inc., of Elkhart, Ind. The technology is a proprietary monoclonal antibody that detects the presence of a specific Bt toxin protein from the most widely used types of transgenic Bt corn and Bt cotton -- crops that have been enhanced through biotechnology to provide built-in insect protection.

"We're pleased to add this improved technology to our line-up of diagnostic tools," says Dr. Chet Sutula, president of Agdia. "The Valent BioSciences antibody provides a faster, more consistent and readable test than other products on the market today. Within about 10 minutes -- in a field or in a laboratory -- the test will yield accurate, reliable results for Cry1Ac and Cry1Ab Bt proteins. We believe seed production and grain handling segments will welcome the accuracy and convenience of the test." The antibodies will be used in Agdia's PathoScreen(TM) Cry1Ac/Ab and ImmunoStrip-Cry1Ac/1Ab(TM) kits.

Agdia was founded in 1981 and provides plant testing products and services to a wide range of customers, including leading growers, extension professionals, consultants, regulators and researchers globally.

Valent BioSciences is an established leader in microbial-based insecticide technology. It markets the leading Bt products -- DiPel(R) and XenTari(R) -- that are sprayed on crops for insect control. It also markets the leading microbial insecticides for the control of mosquitoes.

"Valent BioSciences has core expertise in the area of Bt insecticide technology," says Mike Donaldson, president of the company. "Licensing a key reagent in diagnostic technology to a leader in that category such as Agdia is an effective method for bringing new technologies to market and providing value to our customers."

Valent BioSciences Corporation is headquartered in Libertyville, Ill. The company is recognized worldwide for its leadership position in research, development and commercialization of low risk, environmentally compatible technologies and products for the agricultural, public health, forestry and just recently, the household insecticide business segments. Products include plant growth regulators, microbial insecticides, biological nematicides and various insecticides used for the control of common household insect pests.

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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Jul 17, 2001
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