Knowledge Center for Agriculture Solutions | Koch Agronomic Services
Knowledge Center for Agriculture Solutions | Koch Agronomic Services
Powered by Pronitridine — How CENTURO Protects Nitrogen Applications
Article Tags: CENTURO
As harvests are wrapped up, there’s still a lot to do in the field before another year winds down. Preparing for limiting factors like unpredictable weather, fluctuating markets, and soil health is essential for a successful cropping season.

Efficient nutrient management can have an enormous impact on crop yields. Nitrogen is an important nutrient for plant growth and crop yield. However, applied nitrogen fertilizer is susceptible to losses, such as leaching, denitrification, and volatilization, leading to lower crop yields and negatively impacting your return on investment. 

Innovative solutions are necessary to reduce the impacts of these issues. In the extent of agronomic innovation, Koch Agronomic Services (KAS) has raised the standard, establishing itself as a global leader in nitrogen stabilizers, delivering solutions in nitrogen protection, nutrient management, and seed enhancement, empowering agriculture globally.

CENTURO nitrogen stabilizer is one KAS solution that offers several key benefits to farmers. From nitrogen stabilization to its versatility of application and ease of handling, CENTURO is a valuable tool to enhance farming operations' efficiency. 

Nitrification is an important biological process for plant growth, converting ammonium (NH4+) into nitrate (NO3-), improving nitrogen availability for crops. The bacteria Nitrosomonas plays a pivotal role in the first step of the process. However, excessive nitrification can lead to nitrate leaching, impacting not only crop production but other aspects of agriculture. To optimize the benefit of nitrogen, it is important to manage nitrification efficiently; that’s where a nitrification inhibitor comes into play.
There are three modes of action for nitrification inhibitors: 
  • Competitive inhibition — inhibitor occupies the enzyme’s active site, slowing down nitrogen conversion.
  • Non-competitive inhibition — the inhibitor changes the enzyme's structure, making it less effective.
  • Irreversible inhibition — kills the bacteria responsible for nitrogen conversion, stopping the entire process.

An example of irreversible inhibition is the active ingredient Nitrapyrin, which disables the energy source of the Nitrosomonas bacteria, resulting in the reduction of the population in the soil. 

CENTURO is a novel nitrogen stabilizer that covers two modes of action mentioned above: competitive inhibition and non-competitive inhibition. As a result of years of rigorous research and development, CENTURO is the first nitrification inhibitor to receive EPA registration in over 40 years.  

Pronitridine is the unique, patented active ingredient in CENTURO. It is a reaction product made by combining raw materials to create a complex mixture of molecules that cannot be separated back to their original state. This process can be described by the analogy of making a cake. The cake mix, water, eggs, and oil are mixed together and put into the oven. When it’s in the oven, a chemical reaction takes place, and when it comes out of the oven—it’s a cake. All ingredients have reacted, and the eggs, for instance, can’t be extracted from the cake. 


Pronitridine works by slowing down the conversion of ammonium to nitrate; it does so through its relationship with the enzyme found in Nitrosomonas bacteria, ammonia monooxygenase, or AMO. Pronitridine targets the AMO enzyme with two modes of action, positioning CENTURO as a bacteriostatic nitrification inhibitor. 

  1. Parking in ammonium’s parking spot. The first mode is competitive inhibition, where Pronitridine competes with ammonium for the active site of the AMO enzyme. This temporary occupation of the active site prevents oxidation. Think of it as Pronitridine parking in ammonium’s parking spot.
  2. Changing the shape of the ammonium’s parking spot. The second mode is non-competitive inhibition. In this process, Pronitridine binds to the AMO enzyme, altering the shape of the active site. This change in shape temporarily halts the conversion of ammonium to nitrate, thereby delaying the nitrification process.   


Thanks to these two modes of action, Pronitridine keeps more nitrogen in the ammonium form for a longer period than without Pronitridine, particularly in well-aerated soil environments where Nitrosomonas bacteria thrive . As a result, CENTURO helps to reduce nitrogen loss through leaching and   denitrification, ensuring that more nitrogen remains in the root zone for plant uptake. 
Keeping nitrogen where crops need it through this careful management of nitrification and leaching with CENTURO ensures that input investments are protected. The result is a significant boost in yield, nitrogen use efficiency, and production efficiencies. 
A study conducted by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln found that UAN treated with CENTURO showed significantly lower nitrate concentration in soil samples when compared to untreated UAN over the entire growing season1.


This study is one of six other university field trials conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of CENTURO in stopping nitrate leaching associated with the use of UAN and NH3 fertilizers and prove the power of CENTURO in reducing nitrate leaching.

As for yield, a multi-state three-year study showed CENTURO performed agronomically as good or better than Nitrapyrin2.


Spring and/or in-season application of nitrogen is also an option that offers farmers the flexibility to provide sufficient nitrogen for corn leaf growth and development. The side-dress application offers the key benefit of applying nitrogen fertilizer closer to the time when the crop needs it the most.
Corn side-dress studies showed that CENTURO at the rate of 1.5 gallons per ton with UAN had a significant yield advantage over Instinct II ’s (Nitrapyrin) side-dressing application rate and the untreated control3.


In terms of handling benefits, CENTURO stands out as a more user-friendly, non-hazardous, non-corrosive, and low-odor formulation option compared to Nitrapyrin. An 18-month corrosiveness test was conducted to demonstrate the effect that CENTURO has on an anhydrous ammonia nurse tank metal sample by partially submerging a metal coupon in a CENTURO/Ammonium Hydroxide solution. The test results show that the CENTURO and ammonium hydroxide blend did not corrode the metal.


CENTURO is proof of the KAS commitment to innovation and excellence. The goal was to develop a product that would be highly effective at inhibiting nitrification while also being easy for growers to use. 


Whether you're interested in learning more about CENTURO and how it can optimize your operation or exploring the full line of Koch’s agronomic products, contact your local KAS sales representative.



1The underlying data was provided by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln under a Research Trial Financial Support Agreement with Koch Agronomic Services, LLC. Neither these institutions, nor the individual researchers referenced, endorse or recommend any product or service. Improvements in yield and nutrient use efficiency may not be observed in all cases. 
2The underlying data was provided by University of Nebraska, University of Missouri, and the Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association under Research Trial Financial Support Agreements with Koch Agronomic Services, LLC. Neither the universities, institutions, nor the individual researchers referenced, endorse or recommend any product or service. Improvements in yield and nutrient use efficiency may not be observed in all cases. 
3The underlying data was provided by Alpha Ag Research, Real Farm Research and Tidewater Agronomics under Research Trial Financial Support Agreements with Koch Agronomic Services, LLC. Neither the universities, institutions, nor the individual researchers referenced, endorse or recommend any product or service. Improvements in yield and nutrient use efficiency may not be observed in all cases. 

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Article Tags: CENTURO
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