DNA Plant Technology is marketing its VineSweet tomato,developed through tissue regneration, in Philadelphia andColumbus stores, the company announced Wednesday.

A similar version that has been genetically engineered forlonger shelf life is planned for commercial launch in late 1994or early 1995 after regulatory review. The company hopes theversion developed through cell culture will provide informationabout consumer reaction in the $4 billion retail fresh tomatomarket.

In other news, DNAP announced that its environmentaldiagnostics unit, Agri-Diagnostics Associates, has acquiredexclusive rights from Monsanto Co. to technology for detectingwidely-used pesticides. Monsanto's U.S. patent, number5,147,786, covers immunoassays, chemical preparationmethods, test kits and uses of the immunoassays for detectingacetanalides (also known as a-haloacetamides), the class ofchemicals that comprises the major herbicides alachlor andmetolachlor, as well as acetochlor, propachlor and butachlor.

Agri-Diagnostics of Cinnaminson, N.J. is already making twoimmunoassay kits using the patented technology. Alachlor 2.0and Metochlor 2.0 kits have been optimized to detect anddifferentiate the target chemicals in soil, groundwater and foodat the levels specified by the EPA, FDA and state agencies.

(c) 1997 American Health Consultants. All rights reserved.