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Monsanto Company (MON) And Targeted Growth, Inc. Announce Commercial Licensing Deal For Yield Enhancement Gene

10/19/2005 5:12:18 PM

ST. LOUIS and SEATTLE, Sept. 20 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Monsanto Company and Targeted Growth, Inc. (TGI) today announced a licensing agreement for the development and commercialization of a yield enhancement gene that was developed by TGI.

The agreement includes exclusive licensing rights for one of TGI's demonstrated gene enhancing technologies in applicable Monsanto crops. TGI receives an upfront payment as well as milestone payments and a royalty rate structure. Additional financial terms were not disclosed.

"Yield increase is a main focus area for Monsanto, so we're excited about the possibilities that this gene could bring to our product offerings," said Robert Fraley, Ph.D., Monsanto's chief technology officer. "TGI's technology in yield research and discovery is a natural fit within our development pipeline, which translates new agricultural technology into products that benefit farmers."

TGI is a leading provider of technologies specifically focused on increasing crop yields. Through extensive basic biology and field trial research, the company has established that specific changes in the expression of a single gene in certain agricultural crops significantly increases yield.

"Increased yield is a key goal to improving agricultural crops and our technology consistently demonstrates percentages of yield increase in the double-digits in canola at both U.S. and Canadian test sites," said Thomas Todaro, chief operating officer of Targeted Growth. "We are pleased with the results and excited about the potential for increasing agricultural crop yields throughout the world."

Yields have been improved through traditional breeding and this technology has now proven that plant biotechnology can contribute to the yield increase in a very significant way.

"In practical terms, increasing yields through biotechnology will increase the efficiency of agriculture and allow farmers to be more productive," Todaro said. "Other possible implications include increased revenue to farmers and more availability of food producing crops for global consumption."

About Monsanto

Monsanto Company is a leading global provider of technology-based solutions and agricultural products that improve farm productivity and food quality. For more information, please visit the company's website at

About Targeted Growth, Inc.

Targeted Growth, founded in 1999 and based in Seattle, was formed to commercialize the ability to increase cell division in plants. Increasing cell division causes plants to grow larger, faster and is expected to improve productivity in agriculture. Targeted Growth conducts research at laboratories at the Institute for Systems Biology, the University of Washington and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. For more information, please visit the company's website at

Targeted Growth, Inc.

CONTACT: Thomas Todaro of Targeted Growth, Inc., +1-206-336-5570, or BenKampelman of Monsanto Company, +1-314-694-6192

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