Know more

About cookies

What is a "cookie"?

A "cookie" is a piece of information, usually small and identified by a name, which may be sent to your browser by a website you are visiting. Your web browser will store it for a period of time, and send it back to the web server each time you log on again.

Different types of cookies are placed on the sites:

  • Cookies strictly necessary for the proper functioning of the site
  • Cookies deposited by third party sites to improve the interactivity of the site, to collect statistics

Learn more about cookies and how they work

The different types of cookies used on this site

Cookies strictly necessary for the site to function

These cookies allow the main services of the site to function optimally. You can technically block them using your browser settings but your experience on the site may be degraded.

Furthermore, you have the possibility of opposing the use of audience measurement tracers strictly necessary for the functioning and current administration of the website in the cookie management window accessible via the link located in the footer of the site.

Technical cookies

Name of the cookie


Shelf life

CAS and PHP session cookies

Login credentials, session security



Saving your cookie consent choices

12 months

Audience measurement cookies (AT Internet)

Name of the cookie


Shelf life


Trace the visitor's route in order to establish visit statistics.

13 months


Store the anonymous ID of the visitor who starts the first time he visits the site

13 months


Identify the numbers (unique identifiers of a site) seen by the visitor and store the visitor's identifiers.

13 months

About the AT Internet audience measurement tool :

AT Internet's audience measurement tool Analytics is deployed on this site in order to obtain information on visitors' navigation and to improve its use.

The French data protection authority (CNIL) has granted an exemption to AT Internet's Web Analytics cookie. This tool is thus exempt from the collection of the Internet user's consent with regard to the deposit of analytics cookies. However, you can refuse the deposit of these cookies via the cookie management panel.

Good to know:

  • The data collected are not cross-checked with other processing operations
  • The deposited cookie is only used to produce anonymous statistics
  • The cookie does not allow the user's navigation on other sites to be tracked.

Third party cookies to improve the interactivity of the site

This site relies on certain services provided by third parties which allow :

  • to offer interactive content;
  • improve usability and facilitate the sharing of content on social networks;
  • view videos and animated presentations directly on our website;
  • protect form entries from robots;
  • monitor the performance of the site.

These third parties will collect and use your browsing data for their own purposes.

How to accept or reject cookies

When you start browsing an eZpublish site, the appearance of the "cookies" banner allows you to accept or refuse all the cookies we use. This banner will be displayed as long as you have not made a choice, even if you are browsing on another page of the site.

You can change your choices at any time by clicking on the "Cookie Management" link.

You can manage these cookies in your browser. Here are the procedures to follow: Firefox; Chrome; Explorer; Safari; Opera

For more information about the cookies we use, you can contact INRAE's Data Protection Officer by email at or by post at :


24, chemin de Borde Rouge -Auzeville - CS52627 31326 Castanet Tolosan cedex - France

Last update: May 2021

Menu Logo Principal



An interview with Jan Gielen

Syngenta, a leader in plant breeding and seed production, has been supporting the IWGSC since 2011. We are very grateful for their continuous support and are proud to count this innovative plant breeding company as our sponsor. Since we first began partnering with Syngenta, their scientists have provided critical advice and suggestions for ensuring that the genomic tools the IWGSC develops will be those which industry needs to accelerate crop improvement. Because of their strong support, we were able to stand firm in our quest to provide a high quality reference sequence of bread wheat. This partnership has also meant that Syngenta is better prepared to take advantage of the tools and resources that we develop. The public-private partnership and collaboration has been the foundation for the success of the Consortium.

About Syngenta

Syngenta is a world-leading plant science company committed to promoting sustainable agriculture through innovation research and technology. Growing crops has become increasingly complex due to many factors, including environmental concerns, climate change, fluctuating commodity prices, and customer demands. In that context, Syngenta has put sustainable agriculture at the center of its research targets. We are constantly innovating by combining plant breeding with mathematics, genomics, physiology and agronomy to develop superior varieties for more sustainable crops. Advanced seeds, including innovative hybrid varieties and biotech crops help mitigate risks such as disease and drought and allow farmers to grow food using less land, less water and fewer inputs. We bring a particularly strong offering in corn, soybean, sunflower, cereals and vegetables that allow our customers to face the challenges of modern agriculture in a rapidly changing environment. Our aim is to help feed a growing population by bringing plant potential to life.

Syngenta representative in the IWGSC Coordinating Committee


Jan Gielen
Senior Scientist

Jan Gielen holds a Ph.D. from the Agricultural University in Wageningen and has spent his entire career with Syngenta at breeding stations in the Netherlands and France. Initially focusing on the development of transgenic crops, he gradually moved into marker-assisted breeding and trait dissection research with a specialization in flowering time control and hybridization systems. Over the years, he acquired a solid experience in the modern breeding of vegetables and field crops and currently dedicates a substantial amount of his time to trait discovery in cereals, including hybrid wheat.

In general, what are the benefits of participating in public-private research consortia?

The partnership of experts from both the public and private sector has been key to the success of the IWGSC. The contribution and expertise of the different participants revealed extremely complementary in the effort of sequencing the wheat genome.

What have been the greatest benefits of Syngenta’s partnership with the IWGSC?

For a breeding company like Syngenta the discovery and management of variants in support of marker-assisted breeding is essential. The partnership with the IWGSC has greatly accelerated the development and deployment of markers in modern wheat breeding. The combination of the reference sequence and the exome capture service provided by Arbor Biosciences proved truly powerful for the purpose of variant discovery and the allelic characterization for a range of trait loci in wheat.

Achieving a high-quality reference sequence was the highest priority for the IWGSC. What difference does the completeness of genome sequences make for your breeding programs and trait discovery?

The genome sequence of Chinese Spring has become the reference in all mapping efforts in Syngenta. In that respect the quality and completeness of the genome sequence is crucial. We recognize that Chinese Spring may not always be best possible representative of elite breeding programs, but the quality of the genome sequence thus far has met the requirements. The release of additional high-quality reference genomes in the near future will further enhance the foundation provided by the physical maps.

The IWGSC wheat reference sequence (IWGSC RefSeq v1.0) has been available in advance of publication since 2016; what impact has it had on your work/company?

The access to sequence information has been instrumental to native trait research in wheat from the very first day they became available. Culminating in the publication of the IWGSC RefSeq v1.0 in 2018, the successive releases of wheat genomic sequences and resources have facilitated inhouse efforts in marker-assisted breeding. The observation that genetic maps are gradually being replaced by physical maps in breeding projects further illustrates the impact of the reference sequence.

In IWGSC phase 2.0, we are working on manual and functional annotation of the IWGSC reference sequence. In addition to what you have now, what will this enable you to do in your applications?

With the advent of mutation breeding and genome editing the borders between native and engineered traits are getting blurred. The proper assembly and annotation of the reference genome obviously are essential here, especially in a hexaploid crop like wheat in order to provide a solid foundation for future trait discovery.

Is there anything that the IWGSC is not currently planning that you wish would be part of the strategic activities of the consortium?

The impact of genomics in plant breeding will only increase during the years to come. The proper management and coordination of various initiatives and activities in the area of wheat genomics is essential to secure the return on investment. The IWGSC hopefully will continue to play an important role in federating partners from both the public and private sector and to represent the consortium to external stakeholders and government bodies.

There is a growing need to increase the sustainability of agricultural production. What role does genomic tools and resources play in improving sustainability?

Hybridization in cereals represents a major opportunity to improve the sustainability of the wheat growing globally. Improving yields and crop safety while reducing entrants is a huge challenge that calls upon a range of technologies including genomic tools and resources. Despite the past failures, the current state of the technology in modern breeding makes it possible that hybrid wheat stands its chance to succeed this time.