Two German firms are hoping to tap edible and other plants for nutritive compounds, with even staples like bananas and potatoes holding potential for molecular advance.
20+ year old enzymes and natural compounds specialist, BRAIN, has taken an undisclosed, controlling share in AnalytiCon Discovery, which possesses a library of more than 10,000 natural compounds and pre-isolated fractions, some of which BRAIN seeks to further investigate for nutritive potential.
“The sexiness is we are closer to the development process,” BRAIN unit head of corporate development, Dr Martin Langer, told us this morning.
Virtually all plant matter was a potential source material for the project, but Dr Langer said bananas, apples, pineapples and potatoes could hold unsung potential.
“Yes we can find new natural molecules in these,” Dr Langer said.
For the molecules in the library there was work to do around characterisation and the identification of potential health benefits.
The two firms have worked together before and are part of a 22-firm research consortium called NatLife 2020 the German government backs to the tune of €30m.
Both firms have also worked in the area of cosmetics and pharmaceuticals.
"AnalytiCon has been working intensively on its Drug Discovery units within the pharmaceutical industry for several years. This alliance makes it possible to further bridge the gap between the pharmaceutical, food and cosmetics industries," said Dr Lutz Müller-Kuhrt, CEO of AnalytiCon.
"Through this new alliance with its long-standing partner BRAIN, the company will be strengthened further but will continue to operate independently on the market."
Langer said the cost of the AnalytiCon acquisition was between €1-10m.