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A Technological Breakthrough for Sex Determination in Hens’ Eggs

Jul 24, 2018

BayPAT presents the first non-invasive method

A Technological Breakthrough for Sex Determination in Hens’ Eggs

Munich, Germany, 28th March 2018 – The new method for the determination of the sex of embryos in hens’ eggs, which has been given the name ORBEM GENUS, not only puts an end to the shredding of chicks but also represents a fundamental innovative leap compared to the current technology available: “Unlike all other analysis techniques, the use of imaging provided by magnetic resonance imaging enables the shell of the egg to remain intact. With the help of artificial intelligence, images are automatically analysed and classified. The inventors have therefore achieved a technological breakthrough that will set new benchmarks, especially in terms of process speed, costs and reliability”, declares Dr Robert Phelps, the CEO of the company Bayerische Patentallianz GmbH (BayPAT). BayPAT is currently supervising the ongoing patent procedure and has been contracted to commercialise the invention and the property rights resulting from it.

At present, approximately 100 million chicks per year are incubated in breeding facilities in Germany. Given that they are unable to lay eggs, male chicks are culled immediately after hatching. In Germany, up to 50 million chicks meet this fate every year. In contrast, ORBEM GENUS enables the sex of chicks to be determined during the early days of incubation. This means that the eggs containing male animals can be used for other purposes before the chicks have to experience any form of pain. Furthermore, the fact that half of the eggs laid only have to be incubated for few instead of 21 days means that breeding facilities can use their breeding equipment with higher efficiency.

Another advantage arises in the case of non-fertilised eggs, which represent around 15 percent of all eggs incubated. With ORBEM GENUS, these eggs can automatically be identified before incubation and passed on to the retail market, for example to be sold as table eggs.

‍BayPAT presents the first non-invasive method for sex determination in hens’ eggs: The new method, which has been given the name ORBEM GENUS, combines magnetic resonance imaging known from the world of medicine with cutting edge artificial intelligence, representing a fundamental innovative leap compared to the current technology available. Use of this photo is only authorised and free of charge within the context of the text contained in this press release. The source of the image must be credited. Any other use of the photo is excluded. Use of this image for editorial purposes is free of charge. In the case of publication, please cite the source as follows: “Bayerische Patentallianz GmbH”

The inventors

ORBEM GENUS was developed by lecturers and researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM). The brains behind the technology come from the specialist fields of Physics (Prof. Dr Axel Haase), Reproductive Biotechnology (Prof. Dr Benjamin Schusser, Dr. Maria Laparidou), and Bioengineering/Bioinformatics (Dr. Pedro Gómez, M.Sc. Miguel Molina). The team is planning to found a spin-off, which will also involve the acquisition of public funding and private venture capital, in order to further develop the new technology and make it ready for the market. BayPAT will advise, accompany and support the inventors on every step along the way.

Bayerische Patentallianz GmbH

The company Bayerische Patentallianz GmbH (BayPAT) was founded in 2007 by the university association Universität Bayern e.V. and the Association of the Bavarian Universities of Applied Sciences (UAS). Its main task is to work as a central patent commercialisation agency to foster the transfer of technology of the 28 universities and universities of applied sciences in the German state of Bavaria. Under the umbrella of the Bavarian Research and Innovation Agency (BayFIA), BayPAT is a service provider in the fields of technology transfer, IP management and IP commercialisation. Its main clients are the Bavarian universities, university hospitals and universities of applied sciences and their more than 25,000 scientists and academics, as well as non-university research establishments, industrial enterprises and independent inventors worldwide. The main focuses of BayPAT’s IP assessment and commercialisation activities are the fields of biotechnology, chemistry, medical engineering, physics, the automotive industry, energy engineering, communications engineering and mechanical engineering.

Press contact:

Bayerische Patentallianz GmbH

Dr. Sarah Krüger

Telefon: 089 54 80 177 - 31

Telefax: 089 54 80 177 - 99

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