Soilcea is creating CRISPR-edited citrus trees that are highly tolerant to the citrus industry’s deadliest diseases. Two bacterial diseases, citrus canker and Huanglongbing (greening), are decimating the Florida citrus industry, having already cost the state over $7.8 billion in lost revenue. At Soilcea, our in-house team is working diligently with leading researchers at the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences to forestall the rapid decline of citrus production and deliver citrus trees highly tolerant to these deadly pathogens by using the targeted CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing system.
$1.5 Billion Annual Production Decline
Soilcea is using the CRISPR/Cas9 system to perform non-transgenic genome alterations of citrus trees by removing genes susceptible to specific bacterial diseases. The USDA considers plants edited with CRISPR/Cas9 that could occur naturally as non-GMO and non-regulated. This editing is different from traditional GMOs because no foreign DNA is inserted into the citrus tree from any foreign organism, such as an insect or another plant species. Due to the absence of foreign DNA, Soilcea’s highly-tolerant citrus trees will provide a non-GMO solution to both canker and citrus greening.