Recombinetics Welcomes Hendrix Genetics to the Alliance to End Surgical Castration of Swine

Recombinetics is excited to welcome Hypor, the swine genetics and breeding business of Netherlands-based Hendrix Genetics, to its alliance that is working to eliminate the need for surgical castration of swine as a routine procedure in pork production. Recombinetics and Nebraska-based DNA Genetics initially announced their alliance in January 2018. With the addition of Hypor, the three companies will develop a precision breeding program that results in male piglets born naturally castrated. This program focuses on swine health and well-being while ensuring excellent meat quality and safety.

Today, male piglets are routinely castrated to improve the quality of meat for consumers. Castration not only avoids “boar taint”, an unpleasant odor and unsavory taste but also impacts the animal’s well-being and adds risks to animals from potential side effects of these management interventions. To eliminate this process, Recombinetics developed a precision breeding method resulting in male piglets that remain in a pre-pubertal state.

To determine the commercial viability of castration-free pigs, the alliance will investigate best practices for recovery of puberty and fertility, without compromising traits such as feed efficiency and meat quality. Research is being led by Principal Investigator Tad Sonstegard, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of Acceligen, Recombinetics’ agriculture division.

“Recombinetics has a proven track record of bringing science-based solutions that improve animal health and well-being, like producing naturally hornless and heat-tolerant cattle, and eliminating the need for routine castration of swine. We welcome Hendrix Genetics as a research partner to this alliance. Together we will bring the castration-free trait to market and provide solutions to benefit the pork industry,” said Recombinetics’ Chief Commercial and Scientific Officer, Mitchell Abrahamsen.

“As Hendrix Genetics, we are very excited to be part of this alliance. The targeted result will potentially put an end to one of the biggest concerns of the swine industry regarding animal well-being. Within Hypor, our swine business unit, we are continuously exploring new opportunities to support the pork value chain with innovative and sustainable genetic solutions,” said Luis Prieto Garcia, Hendrix Genetics Managing Director Swine.

The addition of Hendrix Genetics to this alliance provides valuable expertise in responsible farm animal breeding and the animal protein value chain. With the support and expertise of Hendrix Genetics and DNA Genetics, Recombinetics is strategically positioned to get this technology into the hands of pork producers worldwide.

Additional funding of this research is made possible by a grant rewarded to Recombinetics from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research and The Open Philanthropy Project.



About Recombinetics

Founded in 2008, Recombinetics is producing gene-edited animals for biomedical and food production purposes and is generating commercial and collaborative revenues. The Company’s technology platform supports three business lines: Acceligen (precision breeding to enhance animal health, well-being and productivity in food animals); Surrogen (gene-edited swine models of human diseases for biomedical research and pre-clinical trials by pharmaceutical and medical device companies); and Regenevida (development of human regenerative products including cells, tissues and organ products in swine models for exotransplantation to humans).

Recombinetics has a global intellectual property portfolio, with 18 patents issued and more than 200 patent filings on gene-editing methods, traits, and novel reproduction methods in animals.

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About Hendrix Genetics

Hendrix Genetics serves the animal protein value chain with genetic solutions in turkeys, layers, swine and various aquaculture species. Founded in 2005 and backed by a strong portfolio of leading brands, Hendrix Genetics provides expertise and resources to producers worldwide with operations and joint ventures in 25 countries and over 3,000 employees. With respect and care for people, animals and the environment, Hendrix Genetics is committed to delivering better breeding today, for a brighter life tomorrow.

Hypor, part of Hendrix Genetics, is one of the leading suppliers of swine genetics, committed to providing superior genetics that support total system profitability in the pork value chain. Hypor operates from strategically located and interconnected breeding centers in North America, Europe and Asia.

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About DNA Genetics

DNA Genetics LLC is a U.S.-Based swine genetics supplier.  Being producer-owned, DNA Genetics has a deep appreciation of the needs of the pork producers and seeks to produce genetic improvement that addresses the challenges and long-term needs of its customers.  This includes an unrelenting focus on the disciplines required to produce predictable genetic gain and the willingness to invest in and adopt new technologies that help meet the needs of our customers.

DNA Genetics supplies the most widely-used terminal sire in North America (DNA Line 600 Duroc) and the most rapidly adopted maternal line (DNA Line 241 F1).

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