Why was GEiGS® developed?

  • Tropic Biosciences developed GEiGS® to support its own internal product development pipelines, for example in order to produce lines of banana that are resistant to Panama Disease, a devastating fungal disease that is threatening production globally.

  • Recognising the wider potential for GEiGS® beyond tropical crops, Tropic Biosciences has been providing access for its use to a select group of industry clients. These collaborators are using the platform in ground-breaking applications across diverse agricultural sectors ranging from crops through to livestock and aquaculture.

How GEiGS® works

The GEiGS® platform combines benefits of both gene editing and RNA interference (RNAi) to enable the development of non-transgenic yet hereditary gene silencing applications.

In GEiGS®, instead of editing coding genes, we make minimal edits to specific non-coding genes of a host organism using available molecular tools (e.g. CRISPR, TALENs) so that the natural gene silencing machinery of the host is redirected towards selected targets.

These new gene targets can either be endogenous genes that are silenced for example in crop improvement applications, or exogenous genes belonging to pathogens or pests that are targeted for disease and pest-resistance applications.

GEiGS® targets endogenous or exogenous genes

GEiGS® design service

To facilitate the application of GEiGS®, Tropic Biosciences has developed a powerful computational platform that produces effective GEiGS® designs.

This GEiGS-BioCompute platform processes input data that includes sequence information from numerous and diverse non-coding genes within the host and their corresponding expression patterns as well as sequence information derived from the target genes to be silenced. Output data comprises a series of gene editing designs that are specifically tailored according to parameters defined by the user. These parameters include the choice of nuclease that will be used to mediate the GEiGS® edits, tissue specificity of the resulting RNAi and predicted potency of silencing.

GEiGS® is compatible with CRISPR, TALENs and ZFNs

GEiGS® validation service

For many applications, selected designs can then be validated by Tropic Biosciences® in a cell-based assay to ensure that they are effective at silencing their corresponding target sequence. GEiGS® designs are then deployed within the host species; the specific gene edits are typically mediated through the process of Homology Directed Repair (HDR).

Host organisms that contain the desired edits are then tested to confirm that they display the newly gained RNAi phenotype, silencing target genes as expected.

From product definition to design implementation in weeks

Trait
Definition

Specify the host and target e.g. Banana – Panama Disease

GEiGS-BioCompute: Platform Process

Data
Inputs

Annotated host genome and target gene sequence

Automated
Design

Advanced bioinformatics pipeline

Filtration of
Optimal Designs

e.g. Minimal base pair changes, tissue specificity

Duration: 8 – 10 weeks per trait

Implementation
in Host

Optimal designs supplied to client for implementation

Key benefits of GEiGS®

  • Key Benefits Icon
    Precise, predictable, and stable tuning of target gene expression

    By redirecting the silencing activity of the host’s own non-coding genes, GEiGS® introduces novel RNAi activity with highly programmable potency and tissue specificity. This elegant approach requires only minimal changes to the host’s genome (less than 20 nucleotides), thus avoiding transcriptional gene silencing and allowing for highly stable RNAi activity over time and across generations.

  • Key Benefits Icon
    Accelerated development of critical disease and pest resistance traits

    GEiGS® can be used to redirect the silencing activity of the host’s native non-coding genes towards well characterized and highly conserved viral, fungal or pest genes. This distinctly direct approach significantly accelerates product development time while minimizing pleiotropic effects associated with editing the host’s coding genes.

  • Key Benefits Icon
    Favourable regulatory classification in multiple markets

    GEiGS® technology does not involve the insertion of DNA sequences from other organisms (‘Foreign DNA’) into the host genome and does not impact the sequence of proteins. These factors allow for a non-GM classification in multiple major markets and a more streamlined regulatory approval process.

  • Key Benefits Icon
    Universal platform that works with existing gene editing tools

    GEiGS® is not dependent on any one specific gene editing tool, but instead can be deployed by using a broad range of different nucleases. This provides the user with freedom to choose which gene editing tools they use to implement GEiGS® edits – tools that may already be applied in their existing pipelines.

Find out how GEiGS® technology can benefit you

How our users benefit from using the GEiGS® platform

Our global collaborators include

Interested in partnering with us?

Access the GEiGS® platform

We collaborate with world-leading companies and academic institutions, enabling them to access our pioneering GEiGS® technology to address some of the most pressing agricultural production challenges.

Contact us today to discuss GEiGS® licensing and service options and join us in driving innovation forward.

geigs@tropicbioscience.com +44 (0)1603 274441