Protein purification on the menu for DSM

By Alex McNally

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Dsm Protein

DSM has today announced an investment in Danish protein
purification company Upfront Chromatography - a move which further
bolsters the group's commitment to innovation.

The firm said Upfront's down stream processing technique "is of great potential to contribute to all biotechnology-derived products from DSM." ​ Upfront's process enables the isolation of high-value functional proteins and other biomolecules from bioreactors or industrial process side-streams for use as food ingredients, industrial enzymes, nutraceuticals and healthcare products. Investing in innovative new processes has been a major theme for DSM, which stumped up €2m into Finnish genetic research company Jurilab this month, and also indicates DSM's commitment to its five-year plan, Vision 2010. The document lays out a blueprint for how to hit €1bn in sales from innovation by the end of the decade. Upfront's process allows for more efficient purification of bio pharmaceutical proteins, as considerable amounts of highly valuable functional proteins are regularly lost, DSM said, adding that these proteins represent a potentially "valuable source of untapped revenue."​ DSM is making the investment along with InnovationsKapital and NBGI Ventures. The €2m comes from the firm's investment arm, DSM Venturing. The total amount for all three companies came to €6.8m. The proteins Upfront can isolate include lactoferrin, lactoperoxidase, immunoglobulin, chymosin and "undisclosed functional proteins from the sidestream of Avebe's potato starch production​," a spokesperson told DSM was attracted to the deal because of the biopharmaceutical purification Upfront offered, and opportunities for food ingredients and nutraceuticals still "need to be explored." DSM Venturing is charged with the task of boosting strategic growth in the fields of Nutrition, Pharma and Performance Materials. The move will also serve DSM pharmaceutical products, and the investment could help support further developments at Upfront. It has been a busy month for DSM, which also announced it will help sponsor and set up a laboratory together with the Dutch RSM Erasmus University. The firm said the Innovation-Cocreation Lab (ICCL) would be the first of its kind in Europe, and would provide "new strategies and organizational designs."

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