Novartis Agricultural Discovery Institute Inc. (NADII) announced it has changed its name to Torrey Mesa Research Institute (TMRI).

Formerly an institute of the Novartis Research Foundation, NADII became a subsidiary of Syngenta at the beginning of this year. The merger of Novartis Agribusiness and Zeneca Agrochemicals formed Syngenta in November 2000.

"We chose the name Torrey Mesa Research Institute to reflect the outstanding discoveries and advances that have come out of the San Diego region," said Steven Briggs, Ph.D., president and CEO of TMRI. "San Diego is one of the leading biotechnology centers in the United States with world-renowned research institutions, hundreds of biotechnology companies, and a fabulous quality of life. TMRI fits right in, as we are one of the largest research institutes dedicated to agricultural genomics.

"In January, TMRI announced the completion of the Rice Genome Map in collaboration with Myriad Genetics Inc., the first project of its kind in a crop plant to be completed," Dr. Briggs continued. "We identified not only the genes, but their functions and how they work, to provide researchers with crucial new knowledge to improve food crops. Because rice is a model for other cereals, the knowledge from this genome map will contribute to the study of other important cereals such as wheat, corn, and barley, and lead to their future improvement."

Torrey Mesa Research Institute is one of the largest research endeavors dedicated to agricultural genomics. The Institute is focused on applying genomics technologies to the development of improved seed traits, safer crop protection chemicals, plant-based solutions to problems in human and animal health, and sustainable agriculture. TMRI develops and applies genomics tools to establish the relationship between genes, proteins and traits so that they can be isolated and enhanced for commercial use. TMRI, located in La Jolla, Calif., was formed in 1999 and employs 117 scientists. Further information is available at www.tmri.org.

Syngenta is the world's leading agribusiness. The company ranks first in crop protection, and third in the high-value commercial seeds market. Pro forma sales in 1999 were approximately US $7 billion. Syngenta employs more than 20,000 people in over 50 countries. The company is committed to sustainable agriculture through innovative Research and Technology. Formed in November 2000 by the merger of Novartis Agribusiness and Zeneca Agrochemicals, Syngenta is listed on the Swiss Stock exchange, and the London, New York and Sweden exchanges. Further information is available at www.syngenta.com.

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