Ayana Bio opens new laboratory to commercialise cultivated ingredients
Plant cell technology company Ayana Bio has announced it is opening a new state-of-the-art laboratory situated in Boston’s Seaport district in Massachusetts, US.
The lab will serve as a “nucleus” to advance Ayana Bio’s plant cell-cultivated production systems to create a diverse range of cost-effective and high-quality health, wellness and nutrition ingredients.
The lab is in the same building as Ayana Bio’s strategic partner, Ginkgo Bioworks, increasing collaboration and teamwork with Ginkgo’s biological technology and resources.
Ayana Bio says the new lab will help it to overcome previous industry challenges through better cell lines and a multi-product production system. The technology will make plant cell-cultivated ingredients scalable through its proprietary hardware and production process that can accommodate a variety of cell lines simultaneously.
Unlike previous plant cell cultivation processes, Ayana Bio uses the same workflow to manufacture all plant materials, enabling the production of a large volume of different high-value products while keeping costs low.
Effendi Leonard, cofounder and chief technology officer at Ayana Bio, said: “Ayana Bio’s new lab integrates indoor plant cultivation systems, cell biology, process and ingredient development to streamline an efficient workflow from plant cells to final products. Our partnership with Ginkgo is complementary and empowers us to identify optimal starting points to scale diverse plant cells, ultimately generating superior and cost-effective ingredients.”
Inside the lab, Ayana Bio’s plant-cell scientists are developing high-value botanicals. In January the company pledged $3 million to accelerate the sustainable production of cacao bioactives while simultaneously supporting genetic research to improve cacao plant varieties.
The opening of the new lab follows Ayana Bio’s April launch of its first plant cell-derived echinacea and lemon balm health and wellness ingredients. Introduced to the US market, these products have the bioactive composition of conventionally grown botanicals and can replace lemon balm and echinacea in dietary supplement formulations for sleep, mood and immune support.
In June, Ayana Bio unveiled functional gummies made with the plant cell-cultivated echinacea and lemon balm, in partnership with Robertet.
Frank Jaksch, CEO of Ayana Bio, added:“As Ayana Bio makes leaps in our commercialisation capabilities, this new lab stands as a testament to our unwavering dedication to providing the most essential plant bioactives for nutrition-rich formulations. It’s been rewarding to already open our doors to interested partners and showcase the transformative capabilities we employ to cultivate and scale plant materials, liberating ourselves from the constraints of agriculture.”
Ayana Bio says the facility “solidifies [its] commitment to transforming the future of sustainable ingredients in one of the world’s most innovative scientific research and development hubs”.