DURHAM – Pairwise, a gene editing startup focused on crop science that move its headquarters to Durham from San Diego earlier this year, is reporting progress in its $100 million development deal with Bayer.

Pairwise launched with backing from Monsanto and raised $25 million with Monsanto as an investor before that company was acquired by Bayer.

Bayer later agrred to the $100 million deal with Pairwise for research and development collaboration.

On Friday, Pairwise disclosed “early completion of its development milestones in its collaboration with Bayer.” Using gene editing technology known as CRISPR, Pairwise is seeking to develop new products aimed at improving corn, soybeans, wheat, canola and cotton.

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“By accomplishing these milestones 16 months ahead of schedule, Pairwise has significantly accelerated our growing product pipeline,” said Tom Adams, CEO of Pairwise, in the announcement. “We have established a robust trait pipeline with the capacity to initiate nearly 400 unique constructs per year aimed at important commercial targets.”

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“These capabilities put our teams in position to deliver breakthrough innovation in consumer-focused crops, which will translate into product benefits that will delight consumers,” Adams added.

“The breadth of the gene editing that we have developed unlocks tremendous potential to explore a variety of traits that will bring exciting changes to the produce aisle.”

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