Annual General Meeting 2012

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1 Annual General Meeting November 2012 Professor Marilyn Anderson Chief Science Officer 1

2 Major projects Control of fungal diseases corn, soybean, wheat Insect control MGEV - multigene expression vehicle for gene stacking in biotech crops Pharmaceutical applications 2

3 The market for biotech crops is still growing Corn and soybean are the largest biotech crops globally (2011) Biotech crop Global biotech area 2011 (2010) Soybean 47% 75.4 mha (73.3 mha) Corn 32% 51.0 mha (46.8 mha) Cotton 15% 24.7mHa (21.1 mha) Canola 5% 8.2 mha (7.0 mha) The market for biotech crops has grown rapidly in the 16 years since commercialisation In 2011, 160 million hectares of biotech crops were grown globally in 29 countries (148mHa in 2010) The global value of biotech seed was US$13.2b ($11.7b in 2010) (ISAAA brief 2012,

4 Why fungal diseases? Fungal diseases are amongst the most serious threats to food security Pennisi (2010) Science, 327, 804 We are focusing on diseases of corn, soybean and wheat Diplodia ear rot In North America, fungal diseases reduce corn yields by 10-12% and cost about US $8 billion annually. Fungi produce mycotoxins that contaminate the grain and are hazardous to human and animal health

5 Pioneer collaboration-disease resistant corn Production of transgenic corn with resistance to fungal diseases using genes encoding antifungal proteins (AFPs) Discovery Phase 1 Phase 2 Phase 3 Phase 4 Identify genes for improved disease control. Proof of concept. Test genes in plants. Choose leads with best performance in glasshouse and limited field trials Large scale transformation. Glasshouse & field testing. Choose commercial product candidates. Start regulatory process. Trials of traits in elite germplasm. Regulatory process. Commercialisation, launch. 5

6 Milestones - DuPont/Pioneer collaboration Resistance to fungal disease in corn DISCOVERY PHASE 1 PHASES 2-4 GENE DISCOVERY & OPTIMISATION TRAIT VALIDATION Gene discovery (AFP selection) Gene optimisation for corn Corn transformation & proof of concept in glasshouse Field trials etc Applications to other crops Transfer seed to Pioneer Phases may overlap 6

7 Disease project- achievements to date Gene discovery and AFP selection Our first generation leads were members of the plant defensin family We have identified new molecules that enhance the activity of defensins by several fold We have a strong IP position on these discoveries We have verified that this technology works in transgenic plants 7

8 Disease project- achievements to date Corn transformation Corn transformation facility is operating at full capacity In August this year we produced our 10,000 th transgenic corn plant 8

9 Disease project- achievements to date Assessment of transgenic plants Good expression of AFPs in transgenic corn plants with no adverse affects on the plants Bioassays to assess efficacy for disease control have been running at capacity for 12 month 9

10 Disease project- achievements to date Several AFP combinations have produced enhanced disease resistance against the 2 major pathogens of corn in glasshouse bioassays Seed from plants with the best disease resistance will be transferred to Pioneer for testing in the field over the next two growing seasons 10

11 Results are feeding back into the program Gene Discovery Constructs and Plant Analysis Bioassays Knowledge gained from disease bioassays on transgenic corn is informing our gene discovery program New and improved AFPs have been identified and transferred into corn

12 Soybeans Last year Hexima announced that the Company and Pioneer had formally commenced the soybean disease program Pioneer has produced transgenic soybean in their US facilities and has started testing for disease resistance The most promising lines have been selected for field testing next year 12

13 Field Trial Services Hexima has expanded its relationship with DuPont Pioneer in Australia Hexima provides field trial management services for Pioneer s GM OptiGly canola field sites around Australia The relationship provides an opportunity to leverage field trial management skills built up over a number of years and is a valuable alternate income source 13

14 Wheat Last year Monsanto undertook a research license and commercial option over Hexima s AFPs In 2012 they started producing transgenic wheat with these AFPs These plants will be assessed for enhanced resistance to major fungal diseases Hexima is delivering on its strategy of leveraging the AFP technology beyond corn and soy into other major crops. 14

15 Insects Insect protection is one of the most valuable traits in biotech crops Over the last 2 years insects have emerged in North and South America and Asia that are resistant to the current technology This has created opportunities for Hexima s insect programme We are negotiating a new partnership to expand our discovery program for insecticidal molecules 15

16 Patent Applications Lodged & Granted / / / / /12 Applications Granted Patents 16

17 Intellectual Property- new patent applications Agricultural Anti Pathogenic Agents International PCT Patent Application filed on 7 February 2012 Pharmaceutical Applications Novel forms of Plant Defensins International PCT Patent Application filed on 19 October 2012 June 2011 Novel Plant Defensins and Use in the Treatment of Proliferative Diseases International PCT Patent Application filed on 19 October 2012 June 2011 These applications claim priority from US Provisional Patent Application filed on 19 October

18 Consolidation of all teams at La Trobe In 2012, the U. Melb team moved to La Trobe University Research laboratories are housed in the La Trobe Institute of Molecular Science 18

19 Thank you to our team leaders Disease program Nicole van der Weerden, Simon Poon, James McKenna, Vijay Kaul Insect program-kerry Dunse, Jennifer Fox Glasshouse management- Gianna Kalc, Bruce McGinness Pharmaceutical -Mark Hulett Intellectual property - Susanna Herd 19

20 Thank you to all our staff and students 20