UPDATE 1-FuturaGene's drought-tolerance gene gets Chinese patent

Wed Dec 16, 2009 3:11am EST

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Dec 16 (Reuters) - Agriculture biotechnology firm FuturaGene Plc FGN.L said it received a Chinese patent for its drought-tolerance gene for use in food and non-food crops, sending its shares up 6 percent.

The patent follows a license deal that FuturaGene signed with Bayer CropScience, a unit of Bayer AG (BAYGn.DE), earlier this month for a drought-tolerance technology in cotton.

"This Chinese patent is a significant step for the group as it protects and enhances its business development in China," the company said in a statement.

Shares of the company were up 6 percent at 70 pence at 0811 GMT on Wednesday on the London Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Kumar Alagappan in Bangalore; Editing by Vinu Pilakkott)

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