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IRRI licenses CRISPR technology from Broad Institute and Corteva Agriscience


IRRI enters into a non-exclusive research and development (R&D) License Agreement with Broad Institute and Corteva Agriscience™, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, to access their proprietary CRISPR technology.


The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), a member of the CGIAR, has entered into a non-exclusive tripartite R&D licensing agreement with the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, and Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc., now part of Corteva Agriscience™, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, to use CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing technology in IRRI’s R&D activities. The introduction of this genome editing technology with IRRI’s current research will accelerate the development of improved rice varieties that will benefit rice breeders and rice growers in the future.  

Corteva Agriscience™ combines the strengths of DuPont Pioneer, DuPont Crop Protection, and Dow AgroSciences, providing growers around the world with the most complete portfolio in the industry. This agreement builds on previous agreements between Corteva Agriscience™ and IRRI, adding access to new technology and tools to an already fruitful collaboration.   

“This important agreement will further advance IRRI’s genome editing research activities, contributing towards the development of science-based solutions that will benefit rice producers and consumers, as well as enhancing global food and nutrition security,” said Remy Bitoun, Head of IRRI Tech Transfer.

IRRI, as the recipient of the proprietary gene editing technology, will comply with all applicable laws and regulations in countries where the research and development activities will be conducted. These laws and regulations include stewardship, environmental impact, import, export, handling, storage, use, testing, and disposal of all genetically edited materials. Products of these genetic editing technologies will be treated with the same care as how IRRI handles genetically modified products. In addition, IRRI will follow the ethical licensing guidelines from Broad and Pioneer, which restrict the use of CRISPR for certain purposes (see

IRRI recently became a regular member of the Excellence Through Stewardship (ETS) global initiative and has passed certification of 3rd party stewardship audit (see

Furthermore, IRRI, as a non-profit international organization, promotes responsible technology transfer in accordance with its Intellectual Property and Commercialization Policy (IP&C Policy) and with the CGIAR Principles on the Management of Intellectual Assets (“IA Principles”). This Research License Agreement is a Restricted Use Agreement (RUA) which entails acquisition and use of third party intellectual assets that may restrict global accessibility of the products and services resulting from their use. IRRI, as a CGIAR Center, is allowed to enter into such RUAs, under certain provisions detailed in the IA Principles reference document.