23 May 2019

Phytotoxin meets Plant Protection Product


After some Syngenta delegates came to Agroscope in January, we returned the visit and went to Stein in Switzerland to learn more about plant protection product (PPP) research and development.

by Carina Schönsee (ESR9)

On 22nd May 2019, parts of our research group went to visit Syngenta Stein on the invitation of Dr. Claudio Screpanti. We were able to visit different laboratory facilities and get a glimpse into structure elucidation, library synthesis and efficacy testing of newly synthetized molecules. At the Soil Competence Centre, Syngenta scientists care about healthy soils by observing persistence and mobility of candidate compounds in different experimental setups.

Sorption to soil components affects mobility of both persistent phytotoxins and PPP, thus a common field in Syngenta and NaToxAq research. Both types of compounds either remain in soils affecting soil organisms, a not very well investigated field, or they are washed out reaching water resources. Due to the large structural variability and complexity as well as ionizability, both PPP and phytotoxins are often not very well predicted in commonly used models. Thus, reliable quantitative data is needed for better exposure and risk assessment. This data can be obtained in high-throughput analysis systems for screening of mobility properties of large groups of compounds. Within NaToxAq this is performed in the assessment of over 100 of nature’s own pesticides, phytotoxins. We had very fruitful discussion on this common topic of interest and will stay in contact in the future.