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8:30 am Breakfast & Networking

9:00 am Chairman’s Opening Remarks

Novel Research to Elucidate Fundamental Understanding of Agronomics


Genome editing using CRISPR Cas9 works efficiently in plant cells, but using current methods the delivery of genomeediting machinery into most crop varieties isn’t yet possible. This session looks at recent break-throughs in understanding reproduction using CRISPR Cas 9 and the consequential consideration for the industry.

9:10 am Manipulation of Gametes for Fixation of Hybrid Vigour in Seeds

  • Venkatesan Sundaresan Distinguished Professor, Department of Plant Biology / Plant Sciences, University of California, Davis


• Identifying the roadblocks that prevent asexual reproduction
• Using CRISPR Cas 9 to disable three critical meiosis genes
• Identifying a rice gene called Baby Boom 1 to trigger parthenogenesis
• Considerations for the resulting industrial consequences and predictions on how business models will need to adapt

9:40 am HI-Edit: Direct Editing of Commercial Crop Germplasm during Haploid Induction


• Introducing the haploid induction process in different crops, and the cloning of the maize haploid inducer gene MATRILINEAL
• Further exploration of haploid induction in rice, sunflower and other vegetable crops
• How we can use haploid induction as a tool to edit elite commercial crop varieties (HI-Edit)

10:10 am CRISPR/Cas9-Mediated Genome Editing of the Tropical Tree Crop Theobroma Cacao for Enhanced Disease Resistance

  • Mark Guiltinan Professor of Plant Molecular Biology, J. Franklin Styer Professor of Horticultural Botany, Pennsylvania State University


• Using CRISPR Cas9 to breed cacao trees that exhibit desirable traits
• How we plan to develop plants that can withstand diseases, climate change and other challenges
• How CRISPR Cas9 technology can help deliver insights into basic biology
• Identifying genes for future testing to further evolve the cacao tree

10:40 am Morning Refreshments & Networking

Novel Approaches Beyond Genomics to Improve Yield, Productivity and Resistance


Here we look at exploring the benefits of combining data analysis, genomics and AI. Artificial intelligence has emerged as a fundamental player in improved agricultural productivity – this session looks at how these new platforms will allow us to reveal genetic diversity of crops and how we can deliver the next generation of agricultural traits. Additionally, manipulation of the microbiome is proving to be a valuable method for shifting trait performances.

11:10 am Leveraging Data and AI in CropOS to Accelerate Innovation in Food and Crops

  • Paul Skroch Vice President, Data Science and Platform Engineering, Benson Hill Biosystems


• Harnessing the full genetic potential of plants is key to creating the future of food and agriculture
• Currently only a fraction of the genetic potential of plants is being used
• The convergence of technological revolutions in data, cloud, AI and genomics has created an opportunity to unlock the untapped genetic diversity of plants
• CropOS, is a platform enabling food and crop innovation through genomics, data and AI in the cloud

11:40 am Exploring Novel Approaches for Gene Target Selection and Trait Validation in Crops

  • Kristi Snell Chief Science Officer and Vice President of Research, Yield10 Bioscience


• What genes or gene combinations should be edited to deliver the next generation of agricultural traits?
• Yield10’s “GRAIN” Platform allows identification of unique gene combinations for trait development through analysis of regulatory and/or metabolic networks
• Examples of Yield10’s use of GRAIN to identify targets for optimizing crop yield and/or seed oil content will be discussed with a focus on targets appropriate for genome editing

12:10 pm Increasing Crop Yields by Enriching the Microbiome


• Directed selection and improving plant traits using microbes
• Shifting trait performance in the crop towards improved target phenotypes
• The potential benefits on shifting the microbial community structure and the resulting superior products

12:40 pm Networking Lunch

Product Development, Commercialization and the Bottle Neck of Regulation


Clearly, small changes in the genome not only hold the potential to end world hunger but can also lead to large commercial success. This session looks at the product development timeline from concept to commercialization and also aims to address the challenge of over-regulation and tackle entangled regulatory viewpoints. Are we regulating the process or the product? The major challenges in this industry are winning the public perception battle and the burden of over-regulation.

1:40 pm Gene Editing Solutions for Improved Animal Welfare and Heat Tolerance in Cattle

  • Mitch Abrahamsen Executive Vice President, Chief Commercial & Scientific Officer, Acceligen


• Exploring Genselle, the Angus calf genetically engineered to withstand Brazil’s high summer temperatures
• Regulatory approval in Brazil and proof that gene edited animals have a place in our production systems
• Approaches for Domestic and International regulatory approval

2:10 pm Using CRISPR to Supplement TILLING in Development of Next Generation Gene Edited Crops


• Introduction to TILLING
• Advantages and disadvantages of each technique
• Exploring the timelines for product development and a comparison showing how CRISPR/Cas9 can shorten time to commercialization
• Choosing the correct tool for different geographic markets

2:40 pm Calyxt’s High Oleic Soybean; from Concept to Commercialization

  • Jim Presnail Vice President, Research and Development, Calyxt


• Introduction to Calyxt
• TALEN- based gene editing technology
• USDA and FDA approval for HO soybeans
• Commercialization 2019 and beyond
• How Calyxt HO soybean addresses Calyxt’s mission of healthier foods and sustainability
• What can the gene editing industry do to strengthen consumer acceptance for this technology

3:10 pm Panel Discussion: How can we Device Public Engagement Strategies to Successfully Implement a Change in Public Perception?


• Clarity around the public perception
• How to effectively teach the nuances between GMO and gene-editing
• A discussion on gene drive both from the regulatory point of view and applications

3:50 pm Chairman’s Closing Remarks

4:00 pm Close of Summit