Valent BioSciences and Kansas State University Sign Collaborative Agreement for Soil Health Research Initiative with Dr. Charles W. Rice


LIBERTYVILLE, Illinois – (COMMERCIAL THREAD) – Valent BioSciences LLC and Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas announce a formal long-term agreement to advance critical research in the areas of soil health and carbon-smart agriculture. Kansas State University Professor Emeritus of Soil Microbiology, Dr. Charles W. Rice, a world-renowned researcher in the field of the carbon cycle and climate change, will oversee this initiative. Part of the project funding will support a doctoral student and a postdoctoral researcher.

“This collaboration with Kansas State University marks the next important and exciting step in our commitment to soil health in agriculture,” said Dr. Warren Shafer, vice president, global R&D and regulatory affairs at Valent BioSciences. “The specific projects carried out with the university will help us to remain the opinion leader in the fields of the carbon and nitrogen cycle, under the influence of the soil microbiome. These projects are part of a larger initiative led by our parent company, Sumitomo Chemical Company, to mitigate climate change by reducing carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

The overall goal of the collaborative program with Kansas State University is to study the complex interactions that control soil carbon stability and carbon and nitrogen dynamics. The joint research team will assess how MycoApply® branded soil inoculants (containing arbuscular mycorrhizal fungi) and soil conservation management practices together influence soil health. Healthy agricultural soils can reduce the impacts of climate change and offset greenhouse gases by stabilizing nitrogen and carbon.

Soil cores from the Kansas State University studies will be evaluated and analyzed at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in St. Louis, Missouri, using the organization’s state-of-the-art imaging technologies. Valent BioSciences maintains an ongoing collaboration with the Danforth Center to better define and shape the science of soil health. Scientists at the Danforth Center are using x-ray imaging equipment and computer learning to develop new techniques that shape the way we observe the interactions between plant roots and beneficial soil microorganisms in the soil. rhizosphere.

“This public / private partnership builds on the global strengths of the two organizations to meet important research needs on climate change,” said David V. Rosowsky, vice president of research at the University of Kansas State. “Dr. Rice’s unrivaled expertise in soil health will be invaluable to this initiative, as will the tremendous assets that our business partners can provide.

About Valent BioSciences LLC

Based in Libertyville, Ill., Valent BioSciences is a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd., and is the global leader in the development, manufacture and marketing of biorational products with sales in 95 countries around the world. Valent BioSciences is an ISO 9001 certified company. For more information, visit the company’s website at

About Kansas State University

Founded in 1863 as the nation’s first operational land granting university, Kansas State University is a Tier 1 research university. Called the “Silicon Valley for Biodefense,” the university is one of the premier institutions. world leaders in food and biosecurity, providing leadership on some of today’s biggest challenges, including food security and climate change.

About Dr. Charles W. Rice

Dr Charles W. Rice specializes in soil microbiology, the carbon cycle and climate change, and has conducted extensive research in all of these areas. He is the inaugural recipient of the Mary L. Vanier University Chair at Kansas State University, which honors and supports innovative faculty members who do exceptional work. Additionally, he was named 2020 Educator of the Year by the Mid America CropLife Association. Rice was part of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change which received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007. He is also Chairman of the Agriculture and Natural Resources Council of the National Academies of Sciences, engineering and medicine. Rice received a doctorate in soil microbiology and a master’s degree in soil science from the University of Kentucky, and a bachelor’s degree in geography, natural environmental systems from Northern Illinois University.

About the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center

Founded in 1998, the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is a non-profit research institute whose mission is to improve the human condition through plant science. Research, education and awareness aim to have an impact on the link between food security and the environment, and to position the Saint-Louis region as a global center for plant science. The Centre’s work is funded by competitive grants from many sources, including the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the US Department of Energy, the US Agency for International Development, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Follow us on Twitter at @DanforthCenter.


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