Pheronym Inc. Is Making Advancements in Pheromone-Based Nematode Research

Pheronym Inc., a company started by former UF researcher Fatma Kaplan, Ph.D., has developed technology to create pheromones that can control the actions of nematodes, one of the most abundant creatures on Earth. Over 20 years ago, Kaplan began researching ways to use pheromones, which are external chemical triggers that influence mating and other behaviors. According to Kaplan, there are both good and bad nematodes, with the good ones attacking other insect pests in the soil to kill them or keep them from mating.

Pheronym Lands $1 Million National Science Foundation Sbir Phase II Grant

UF Innovate | Accelerate alum, Pheronym, an ag-biotech pest management company, has been awarded a second non-dilutive National Science Foundation (NSF) SBIR Phase II for $1 Million. The grant will fund the final steps to scaling commercial manufacturing of their sustainable, eco-, and climate-friendly approach to pest control. The target pests include Thrips, a globally important pest that developed resistance to chemical pesticides.

Pheronym Begins Scaling Pest Bio-Control Solution at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Pheronym, an ag-biotech pest management company that got its start at UF Innovate | Accelerate's incubator The Hub, has begun scaling up production of its patented NemastimTM pest bio-control solution at Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, through a development agreement that provides access to key fermentation and quality control systems.

Nematodes in Space: The Final Frontier

Researchers at ARS’s Southeastern Fruit and Tree Nut Research Station in Byron, Georgia, teamed with UF Innovate | Accelerate alumni Pheronym, Inc., a company that specializes in eco-friendly pest control, to send beneficial nematodes, known as entomopathogenic nematodes, to the International Space Station (ISS) to study their ability to function under microgravity conditions.

Harness Pheromones for Sustainable Pest Control

"Without some method of treatment, about 12% of crops globally would be lost to plant parasitic nematodes,” says Karl Cameron Schiller, co-founder and chief operating officer of bio-tech startup Pheronym. To combat these pests, Schiller and his team are developing non-toxic pesticide solutions that pose fewer risks to the environment.

Pheronym and USDA Enter Into 5-Year CRADA

UF Innovate | The Hub and UF Innovate | Sid Martin Biotech alum Pheronym, an Ag-biotech pest control company, has signed a 5-year Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service (USDA ARS).

Communicating With Nematodes for Better Farming

Pheronym was one of the nine finalist teams for the 2020 Ray of Hope Prize®, presented by the Biomimicry Institute and the Ray C. Anderson Foundation. Pheronym increases the effectiveness of commercially available beneficial nematodes (microscopic roundworms) by tapping into their natural communication platform, pheromones.