Shares of Ceres Inc. more than doubled in value Wednesday after the company announced it had secured a U.S. patent for a system it developed to genetically engineer crops.

The Thousand Oaks company’s main business is developing sorghum crops as a fuel for electrical generation. But in conjunction with its research, it developed iCODE, or Intelligent Combinatorial Optimization and Directed Evolution. The system allows researchers to rapidly create, evaluate and select optimal combinations of genes and their control components for traits in crops such as corn and soybean.

Because of the efficiency of the system, Ceres believes iCODE can enable new discoveries and allow small research labs to compete against much larger operations.

“Seed and trait companies rely on intellectual property protection, and iCODE could play a key role for companies attempting to access this new IP landscape,” Ceres Chief Executive Richard Hamilton said in a statement.

Shares closed up $1.11 or 116 percent to $2.06 on the Nasdaq.

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