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Aloe 2.0: A Safer, Domestic Supply of High-grade Polyacetylated Mannans

Award Information
Agency: Department of Agriculture
Branch: N/A
Contract: 2020-00591
Agency Tracking Number: 2020-00591
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Solicitation Topic Code: 8.199999999999999
Solicitation Number: USDA-NIFA-SBIR-006790
Solicitation Year: 2020
Award Year: 2020
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2020-08-05
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2021-04-30
Small Business Information
1962 Main Street, Suite 200 #234
Sarasota, FL 34236-9515
United States
DUNS: 808398120
HUBZone Owned: Yes
Woman Owned: No
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: No
Principal Investigator
 Jonathan Meuser
 (858) 365-0434
Business Contact
 Jonathan Meuser
Phone: (858) 365-0434
Research Institution

Aloe vera ​is a widely used plant found in hundreds of products. Most commercial aloe cultivation hasbeen offshored. U.S. manufacturers of aloe containing products must import this crop but this materialoften has issues with seasonal variation dilution contamination with pesticides and evenadulteration. Additionally aloe produces carcinogens such as aloin that must be removed before usethrough costly processing steps.We aim to solve the current issues with aloe by the development of a commercial ​Aloe vera​ plant cellculture. The liquid culture of plants is an established technology in which plants are grown as a finesuspension of small clumps or single cells. Unlike ​Aloe vera​ plants an aloe cell culture can bedomestically-produced in a safe and high quality way without pesticides or adulterants. Aloe cellculture also allows the application of techniques to isolate aloe cell lines that do not produce thecarcinogen aloin. Chi Botanic has recently established an aloe cell culture.Our objectives for this Phase I proposal is to (1) optimize growth of our aloe​ ​plant cell cultures (2)determine the quality of this plant material (polysaccharide and aloin content) and (3) develop aloeplant cell lines that do not produce the carcinogen aloin.To accomplish these objectives we will subject our aloe cell cultures to culture optimization methodscommonly used to optimize growth of microorganisms. To generate aloin free plant cell cultures wewill apply a gene editing approach to disrupt known genes involved in aloin biosynthesis. Thisresearch will establish aloe cell culture technology as an innovative and domestic way to produceproducts from aloe.

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