The collaboration is intended to support Aker’s new delivery platform, LYSOVETA, which is based on lysophosphatidylcholine (LPC) -bound EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) from krill.
The complex allows EPA and DHA to cross the blood-brain barrier and enter the brain, as well as enriching the retina for improved eye health.
“The LPC transporter allows EPA and DHA to reach the brain and retina,” explains Papasani Subbaiah, professor of medicine, biochemistry and molecular genetics at the UIC College of Medicine.
“We have shown that LPC-bound EPA and DHA from krill oil have an enormous positive influence on the uptake in these organs.”
Under the agreement, the Oslo-based company will receive an exclusive license to the current intellectual property resulting from Professor Subbaiah’s work on LPC-EPA / DHA.
Aker will also provide the UIC team with LPC-linked EPA and DHA from Antarctic krill to advance his research.
LPC-EPA and Depression .
Prof. Subbaiah was the lead author of a recent one to studyTo study the ability of LPC-EPA to fight disorders such as depression by increasing EPA levels in the brain.
He noted that increasing EPA levels in the brain by consuming EPA has proven difficult because the amount of EPA that would have to be ingested to show an increase in EPA levels in the brain is quite large be – 40 to 50 milliliters (ml) daily.
“Our partnership with the University of Illinois at Chicago is the first step in building a strong network of employees in the LPC-linked EPA and DHA space,” said Matts Johansen, CEO of Aker BioMarine.
“We will continue to explore the potential of LPC-bound EPA and DHA from krill to gain a fuller and deeper understanding of how LYSOVETA can improve brain and eye function. .
“There is no better way to start this than with a world-class research team on the subject by our side.”
The company, founded in November 2020, aims to apply the LYSOVETA platform to healthy aging as well as eye and brain health.
This development is particularly applicable in the early years and late in life, where the greatest structural and cognitive changes occur.
Research suggests that the targeted release of essential fatty acids can be of particular importance in times of accelerated changes in the brain structure.
Aker explains that further research into the role of LPC-EPA / DHA from a lifespan perspective could therefore be beneficial for both individuals and society as a whole.
Increase in production .
The company announced that it will increase the production capacity of the molecule at its Houston manufacturing facility with regulatory approval for the nutritional supplement version of LYSOVETA by the end of 2022.
Aker added it is also seeking partners to pursue commercial opportunities in the pharmaceutical and infant nutrition segments.
The agreement with UIC also appears to be the first in a series of partnerships between science and industry, as Aker revealed his intention to reach universities and research institutions with material and expertise to stimulate further research.
“It is important to put our findings into practice to test and demonstrate the commercial potential of LPC-linked EPA and DHA for human health benefits,” added Hyunjin Kim, Associate Technology Manager, UIC Office of Technology, plus management.
“We are delighted to be working with Aker BioMarine, a partner whose products are deeply rooted in science.”