The Israeli company Phenome Networks that was founded in 2008 by Prof. Dani Zamir*, a plant geneticist and Dr. Yaniv Semel, offers a suite of software solutions aimed for plant breeders and variety testers.
Phenome Networks' leading product is a software package named PhenomeOne Breeding Software. This software lets its users capture, organize and manage data produced as part of breeding processes. The software organizes the data in a highly user-friendly manner and supports the breeder, the variety tester and genetic researcher in identifying the best varieties and crosses and which are worthy of future development and has the best potential to become successful commercial products or can be used in further cultivation.
The software package supports all stages of the pre-breeding, breeding and variety testing processes, beginning with the early stage of collecting promising genetic data, through the stage of selection and evaluation of the crosses, which suit most the needs of the breeding program. This, with an emphasis on traits like disease and pest resistance, high productivity, taste and appearance.
PhenomeOne software package is exceptionally user-friendly and very flexible. It interfaces with Excel in supporting uploading and downloading data easily to and from Excel Sheets. PhenomeOne is applicable to all crops including field crops, vegetables, Ornamentals, Cannabis, trees and other plant species.
PhenomeOne is comprised of six modules:
1) A breeding software which is a robust system for managing all data created as part of breeding and testing processes. It supports the breeder in his/her selection activity and decision making.
2) Inventory Management, which makes possible tracing and tracking of germplasm lots and seed inventory in a digital way;
3) PhenomApp, a mobile application which makes it possible for users to collect data in the field by using a tablet or a smart phone or other mobile devices;
4) Data analysis, which makes possible to statistically analyze the breeding and observations data with an emphasis on visualization and on user-friendliness;
5) Genomics, which makes possible managing the genomic data intertwined with the breeding process. This makes possible calculating the correlation between DNA markers and plant traits impacted by them;
6) PhenomeBI, Breeding Intelligence, an algorithm which provides recommendations for the breeder of high-potential crosses, in accordance with the defined goals of the breeding program.
PhenomeOne software package has many advantages, the most important is the huge impact on the breeding program results in developing better varieties in less time. Other advantages are in the standardization of the data, the possibilities of better team work, where researchers, geneticists, breeders, testers of varieties, managers cooperate. PhenomeOne makes possible an easy-going, streaming communication and information between all participants in the breeding process and everyone can contribute from their own perspective.
PhenomeOne is web-based and its principle of function is 'A single-page Application'. This turns it into a highly user-friendly application that gives each user a personalized point of view to see only relevant and allowed information, based on the business needs and relevancy of information.
The business model of Phenome Networks is based on the 'SaaS' model, namely, 'Software as a Service'.
The future vision of Phenome Networks speaks about providing innovative and high-quality software solutions for seed companies, aiming to transform genetic information into improved selection of plants of all sorts in order to overcome the increasing demand for food to an ever-increasing world population. This, without compromising the search after important traits of these very same plant species.
*At the department of plant sciences at the faculty of agriculture of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem .