NUtech Ventures presents the Start-up Company of the Year award to Epicrop Technologies. Founded by Drs. Sally MacKenzie and Michael Fromm, Epicrop is developing a revolutionary epigenetic technology for improving crop yields. Epigenetic modifications are naturally occurring biological marks on the plant's DNA or chromatin. These epigenetic marks help the plant develop normally and to adapt to its environment. Importantly, epigenetic marks are involved in regulating gene expression but do not cause changes in the genome or any protein sequences to occur.
Although epigenetic modifications within crops have been known for many years to be important for plant development, their role in crop performance is only now emerging.
Epicrop's epigenetic technology is unique as it is able to improve crop yields and stress tolerance without making any changes to the DNA sequence of the plant. The final crop plant is genetically identical to the starting plant and contains no foreign genes or any changes to the plant's DNA.
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