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VG Energy to optimize algae “lipid trigger” compound with biofuel researcher

VG Energy, the majority-owned subsidiary of Viral Genetics, has entered into an agreement with UniQuest Pty. Ltd., the commercialization arm of the University of Queensland, Australia, to optimize the use of Metabolic Disruption Technology (“MDT”) compounds in algae lipid production. (Earlier post.)

Optimization will occur through experiments leading to the identification of the ideal concentration, timing and amount of MDT compounds to use. The multi-part study will begin with ten of the most commercially-viable algae strains in their optimized production environments, and narrow the set down to one, top-responding strain.

The study is intended to guide the subsequent design of advanced commercialization and scale-up studies using the optimized strain, production method and dosing. VG Energy researchers have shown in multiple studies to produce a 10%-300% increase in the lipids produced by various strains of algae and other plant sources that can potentially be distilled into biofuel, and other high value oils for the food, cosmetics and nutraceuticals industries.

The project will be carried out by Associate Professor Ben Hankamer of the University of Queensland’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience via its main commercialization company, UniQuest Pty. Ltd.and is expected to take several months. Hankamer is the director of the Solar Biofuels Consortium, which brings together seven international teams and approximately 100 researchers working on biofuels and production optimization. The consortium fosters close partnerships with industries that have synergy to establish effective value chains including the biotechnology, engineering, oil, airline and manufacturing industries.

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