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Posted: October 27, 2008
Rosetta Genomics Leverages its MicroRNA Platform Technologies to Launch Plant Biotech Initiative
(Nanowerk News) Rosetta Genomics Ltd., a leading developer of microRNA-based diagnostics and therapeutics, announced today it has launched Rosetta Green, a microRNA-based plant biotechnology project. Rosetta Green will leverage the extensive knowledge gained at Rosetta Genomics in microRNAs, as well as its proprietary technologies and strong IP position, to develop a wide range of plant-based applications. The company has recently completed a financing round from private investors exclusively for this project.
"Since our founding in 2000, we have maintained that small non-protein coding RNA - what we now know are microRNAs - play a critical role in many cellular processes," said Amir Avniel, CEO of Rosetta Genomics. "There is a large and growing body of evidence, including research we have been conducting in-house, pointing to the importance of microRNAs in plants and algal development, which may have potential applications in a wide range of plant-based biotech products. We feel it is critical at this point in time to explore this important field to ensure Rosetta Genomics remains at the forefront of research, development and commercialization of microRNA-based products."
MicroRNAs have been established as key regulators of protein expression and their aberrant regulation in humans is associated with many serious diseases. However, microRNAs' vast potential is not limited to humans.
Research conducted at Rosetta Green has shown a promising correlation between the expression of microRNAs and algal oil content. In addition, correlation has been found between microRNAs and starch & oil content in corn.
"MicroRNAs hold significant potential for the plant biotechnology industry," noted Dr. Rudy Maor, Head of Research and Development at Rosetta Green. "Stemming from their role as master regulators of gene expression, microRNAs are believed to play a critical role in each major step in plant and algal development and may therefore affect biotech-related traits such as oil and starch content, stress-tolerance, growth rate, yield, and more."
"Using Rosetta Genomics' unique microRNA technologies and strong IP, our goal is to develop a wide range of solutions that will assist companies in addressing critical unmet needs, " said Dr. Dalia Cohen, Chief Scientific Officer at Rosetta Genomics. "Through collaborations with strategic partners in the plant biotech industry, we intend to develop novel solutions using the unique potential microRNAs hold."
MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are naturally occurring, short non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression in plants, humans, and have been recently discovered in algae. The ability to selectively regulate gene expression through microRNAs could provide the means to enhance a wide range of plant and algal characteristics which are of high value to the plant biotech industry.
About Rosetta Genomics
Rosetta Genomics is a leader in the field of microRNAs. Founded in 2000, the company's integrative research platform combining bioinformatics and state-of-the-art laboratory processes has led to the discovery of hundreds of biologically validated novel human microRNAs. Building on its strong IP position and proprietary platform technologies, Rosetta Genomics is working on the application of these technologies in the development of a full range of microRNA-based diagnostic and therapeutic tools, focusing primarily on cancer and various women's health indications. The first microRNA diagnostic test applying Rosetta Genomics' technology has been approved for clinical use by the State of New York, and the company expects it will be launched by licensed clinical laboratories in the United States in 2008. For more information, please visit http://www.rosettagenomics.com