Yield10 Bioscience Files U.S. Patent Application Covering New Technology Enabling Low-cost Production of PHA-based Biomaterials in Camelina
The new Yield10 patent application describes a discovery around maintaining the viability and vigor of Camelina seed containing high levels of PHA biopolymer. This is an important step toward realizing a cost-effective, seed-based production platform for the simplest member of the PHA family, PHB, using Camelina. With this new patent-pending technology, Yield10 plans to develop and commercialize products for water treatment applications using the Camelina PHB platform. Yield10 is also seeking partners interested in developing commercial opportunities for crop PHA biomaterials in plastics replacements markets, where Yield10 would expect to serve as a technology provider.
“While we maintain our focus on the development of novel yield traits for commercial crops based on a licensing model, we are working to develop independent market opportunities for Yield10 in the specialty oils and niche crop space as part of our business development activities,” said
Yield10 is a pioneer in the development of technology for producing PHA/PHB biomaterials in crops. Seed-based PHA/PHB production provides an opportunity to sustainably produce these natural biodegradable materials at low-cost to disrupt the cost advantage of the petroleum plastics they functionally replace. Based on the Company’s internal engineering projections, the costs achievable may also enable broad use of this material for water treatment applications where it acts as a maintenance-free growth substrate for bacteria that converts nitrate to nitrogen gas reducing pollution and algal growth.
Over the last several years, Yield10 has developed Camelina as a platform crop using it to identify, develop and evaluate the Company’s pipeline of novel traits to enhance yield in commercially important row crops such as canola, soybean and corn. Recent discoveries by Yield10 for producing PHB in an economically viable manner may also benefit from Yield10’s work to boost yield in oilseed crops. Yield10 plans to begin testing PHB producing Camelina plants in small field tests as early as the 2020 growing season.
Background on PHA for Water Treatment
Scientific data has clearly shown that fertilizer (NPK) is essential for global food security, however its use is also a major source of nutrient pollution in our waterways. There is global demand for development of sustainable, economically attractive ways to reduce fertilizer run-off via simple and cost-effective methods to remove it from water where it comes from multiple sources, including septic systems. PHA has been successfully used to manage algal growth in aquariums and ponds where denitrifying bacteria present in the water feed on PHA pellets and use the energy to convert the nitrate to nitrogen gas (78% of air is nitrogen). Once the nitrate is removed, the algae will disappear. This market application has been known since the 1980s, but its adoption has been constrained by the high cost of producing material through fermentation. There is significant potential to use Yield10’s PHA Camelina platform as a sustainable, low-cost source of PHA biopolymer to improve the overall sustainability of food production and reduce nutrient pollution of our waterways.
For more information about the company, please visit www.yield10bio.com.
Safe Harbor for Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements which are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. The forward-looking statements in this release do not constitute guarantees of future performance. Investors are cautioned that statements in this press release which are not strictly historical, including, without limitation, the Company’s ability to develop and commercialize a seed-based production platform for PHB using Camelina as a commercial business focused on water treatment applications, either by itself or together with a partner; whether or not the patent application described above will result in an issued patent; whether the PHA Camelina platform can be developed to create new sources of revenue for farmers independent of export markets, reduce run-off from fertilizer and produce a natural biodegradable product that can be used to reduce nitrate pollution from aquaculture and septic systems; and whether anticipated regulatory pathways will result in any cost savings or other efficiencies in the development of this platform, constitute forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated, including the risks and uncertainties detailed in
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Source: Yield10 Bioscience, Inc.