Napigen’s gene editing technology and the future of food

Renee Shenton
Apr 24, 2019 · 2 min read

Breakout Labs is proud to announce funding for its 47th company, Napigen.

Napigen is reinventing gene editing by focusing on the mitochondrion, a critical cellular organelle which contains its own tiny genome. Napigen’s proprietary technology opens up new business opportunities in human healthcare, industrial biotechnology and agriculture.

The company’s first products will be in agriculture. Hybridization has been an important tool for increasing yield in crops such as corn, but has been impeded in other crops, such as wheat, which is the most highly planted and consumed human staple. Napigen’s hybridization technology allows the production of non-GMO hybrid seeds in crop plants that are currently mostly non-hybrid. Breakout Labs is funding proof of concept experiments in wheat, which will be critical to developing industry partnerships.

The hybrid vigor of Napigen products is expected to provide transformative increases in crop yields, to address the food security needs of our society in view of the dramatic population increase expected this century.

Napigen is led by Dr. Hajime Sakai, who has 18 years experience in agricultural R&D at DuPont Pioneer and a Ph.D in Yeast Mitochondrial Genetics. Napigen’s cofounders include Berkeley professor and entrepreneur, Dr. Jay Keasling along with agriculture investor, Dr. Roger Wyse and agriculture industry veteran, Dr. Ganesh Kishore. The company is currently located at the Delaware Innovation Space in Wilmington, DE.

To learn more about the company, please visit www.napigen.com.

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Breakout Ventures

Breakout Ventures invests in creative bioscience companies harnessing the power of cells and computation to scale solutions in human health and sustainability.

Renee Shenton

Written by

Head of Community — Breakout Ventures

Breakout Ventures

Breakout Ventures invests in creative bioscience companies harnessing the power of cells and computation to scale solutions in human health and sustainability.