Synpromics successfully use synthetic biology in plant science projects


Synpromics, a Scottish-based synthetic biology company today announced that it has successfully generated several highly effective synthetic promoters for use in plants.

Dr Michael Roberts, Founder and CSO, said:

“We have now shown that our highly disruptive technology platform can be extended from human life science into plant science. Whilst this was always expected, we now have evidence of the wide applicability of the platform. We have created at least one promoter that mediates gene expression to levels higher than is achievable with the ubiquitin-1 promoter, which is widely acknowledged as a high expressing promoter in plants. While high expression is not always the main goal, we have also proven that we can rationally design effective synthetic plant promoters. This represents a major step forward for the company and the application of our technology in the Agricultural biotechnology industry.”

Synpromics has a highly renowned Scientific Advisory Board including Professor Jonathan Jones (Sainsbury Laboratory), Dr David Lawrence (ex CSO of Syngenta) and Professor David Hume (Director of the Roslin Institute).

Last October, Synpromics announced an important collaboration with Dow AgroSciences, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Company, to develop Synpromics’ proprietary technology for application in plant science. An initial proof of concept project with Dow AgroSciences had commenced to demonstrate the application of Synpromics’ synthetic promoter technology in certain crops. David Lawrence, Chairman of Synpromics, commented:

“This is an important deal for the company that validates the potential value to industry of our proprietary technology. For a start-up such as Synpromics to establish this collaboration with a leading multinational is an exceptional achievement. It is also notable that this is the first time that Dow AgroSciences has partnered with a company in Scotland.”

Concerning the financing, Synpromics has received support from across Scottish Enterprise since its launch in 2012. The introduction to Dow AgroSciences was also made by Scottish Enterprise. In March 2014, Synpromics also secured £250,000 from the investment arm of Scottish Enterprise, the Scottish Investment Bank.

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