SBIR Phase I: Transgenic Strategy for Nematode Control

Period of Performance: 01/01/2003 - 12/31/2003


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Divergence, Inc.
Saint Louis, MO 63132
Principal Investigator


This Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Phase I project proposes to develop transgenic crop plants exhibiting increased resistance to nematode infection and damage. Present strategies for dealing with nematode infections involve chemicals that are both toxic and environmentally hazardous. A transgenic solution has the potential to provide economic benefit to producers through improved yields as well as social and environmental benefits resulting from the reduction in the use of hazardous and polluting materials. The specific goal of this Phase I research is to genetically modify plants to express the genes necessary for the biosynthesis of specific naturally occurring fatty acids and to determine whether the accumulation of the fatty acids of interest in the roots results in concomitant increase in resistance to plant-pathogenic nematodes. Positive results in this phase of research could lead directly to the application of this transgenic technology to economically relevant crops.