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Biocatalytic production of precursors to lutein and zeaxanthin to address age related macular degeneration

Award Information
Agency: Department of Health and Human Services
Branch: National Institutes of Health
Contract: 1R41EY028482-01
Agency Tracking Number: R41EY028482
Amount: $121,978.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: N
Solicitation Number: PA16-303
Timeline
Solicitation Year: 2016
Award Year: 2017
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2017-09-30
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2018-09-29
Small Business Information
2870 VOIGHT CANYON DR, Genoa, NV, 89511-6025
DUNS: 078715630
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 CLAUS TITTIGER
 (775) 784-6480
 claus.tittiger@gmail.com
Business Contact
 JENNIFER OTT
Phone: (775) 280-9479
Email: jottnv@yahoo.com
Research Institution
 UNIVERSITY OF NEVADA RENO
 204 ROSS HALL MAILSTOP 325
RENO, NV, 89557-0001
 Nonprofit college or university
Abstract
Project Summary Atrophic dry age related macular degeneration AMD is the leading cause of severe loss of vision for those over age Dietary supplements containing lutein and zeaxanthin are recommended by the NEI for those at risk of late AMD There has been a corresponding growth in demand for these two xanthophylls Lutein and zeaxanthin are currently sourced from marigolds grown mostly overseas The purity and reliability of these sources is highly variable A synthetic source for lutein would ensure quality and secure adequate supplies for the predicted ever increasing demand for this eye health product However there is no commercially viable synthesis of the natural enantiomerically correct form R andapos R andapos R of lutein This barrier prevents the development of a secure reliable and scalable source for lutein Furthermore the unavailability of pure synthetic isomers prevents definitive experimental studies on their relative effectiveness The current proposal seeks to remove this barrier by demonstrating a reliable synthesis of enantiomerically correct lutein and zeaxanthin The hypothesis is that highly enantiomerically enriched S ipsdienol or R ipsdienol can be used to synthesize nature identical lutein or zeaxanthin respectively We have developed an innovative enzymatic process that eliminates the current prohibitively high cost to produce enantiomerically enriched ipsdienol Furthermore we will optimize production of recombinant enzymes used in our process further reducing costs Completion of this Phase I project will show the practicality of new production methods for lutein and zeaxanthin This should lead to significant price reductions for highly pure forms of these chemicals thus enabling further research into their protective properties Phase II efforts will confirm the bioactivity of our products and confirm that possible contaminants in natural preparations do not confer the protective effects assigned to lutein and zeaxanthin We will also seek to expand the potential market for these chemicals as food supplements Project Narrative Lutein and zeaxanthin are recommended as dietary supplements for people at risk of developing late onset macular degeneration AMD The proposed research will investigate the feasibility of a new method to synthesize pure lutein isomers from scratch creating both a valuable research tool as well as a potential alternative source of nature identical lutein and zeaxanthin

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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