Chicago, IL (January 21, 2014) – zuChem, Inc., an innovative supplier of carbohydrates, specialized sugars, and process technology for the food, nutritional, and pharmaceutical related industries, today announced that it has entered into a global licensing agreement with the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for rights to a novel method for the production of 2′-fucosyllactose (2’-FL). 2’-FL is the most abundant human milk oligosaccharide (HMO) in breast milk and thought to have a variety of health benefits, including protection from enteric pathogens and assisting in cognitive development.
“zuChem is the right partner for the commercialization of this technology,” said Lesley Millar-Nicholson, director of the University’s Office of Technology Management. “The Company has developed scalable processes to manufacture new nutritional and health carbohydrates and is well positioned to expand upon work developed here on the Urbana campus and implement it at the commercial scale and cost necessary to bring 2’-FL to market.”
“We are excited to be adding the 2’-FL production technology developed by Drs. Jin, Miller, and their coworkers to our oligosaccharide production platform,” said David Demirjian, CEO of zuChem. “This technology is an excellent fit for our Company and allows us to expand our product offerings in this important area. Fucosylated oligosaccharides such as 2’-FL have been traditionally difficult to make and in the short term we expect this new product to assist researchers in investigating the biological role of 2’-FL.”
zuChem has been developing a robust process technology platform for the cost-effective manufacture of a wide variety of oligosaccharides, including HMOs such as 2’-FL and others. Recently the Company was awarded a Phase I Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) Grant by the National Institutes of Health to support development of fucosylated oligosaccharides and their precursors, including 2’-FL (Dr. Leila Aminova, Principal Investigator). The University’s 2’-FL technology directly complements Dr. Aminova’s work.
zuChem is currently in the process of optimizing and scaling its oligosaccharide production technology. The technology will made available for large-scale use through strategic partnerships with interested parties. In addition, the 2’-FL product will also be made available in research quantities as part of the Company’s expansion of its zuCarb™ Reagents products catalog. This catalog is focused on meeting the increasing demand for rare and modified sugars, and the reagents necessary for their use by researchers. New products launched in 2013 include rare sugars such as l-galactose, as well as sugar phosphates including β- l-glucose-1-phosphate, α-d-galactose-1-phosphate and β-l-xylose-1-phosphate. Additional new products available include a variety of activated sugars, available on a custom order basis. For additional information on the availability of 2’-FL and other products, please contact zuChem at (312) 997-2150 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is a world-class research institution boasting a respected faculty, high national rankings, and state-of-the-art facilities. The University’s accomplishments include 22 Nobel Laureates among its faculty and alumni and such revolutionary innovations as the Web browser, new plant varieties, and even the discovery of a third form of life.
About zuChem, Inc.
zuChem develops and commercializes innovative green, renewable manufacturing processes to produce unique carbohydrates and glycochemicals for human health and nutrition. The Company’s proprietary technology platform allows it to produce a variety of specialty sweeteners, pharmaceutical intermediates, nutritional prebiotics and other industrial bio-products using enzymatic, fermentation and synthetic biology technologies. zuChem is headquartered in Chicago, Illinois with research operations in Peoria, Illinois. For more information on zuChem’s proprietary rare sugar manufacturing processes and the availability of its food ingredient, specialty chemical and pharmaceutical intermediate products, please visit www.zuchem.com or call Rajni Aneja at (312) 997-2150.