Cognis, a worldwide supplier of innovative specialty chemicals and nutritional ingredients, and InterMed Discovery (IMD), an emerging world class natural product lead-discovery company, today announced that Cognis has exclusively licensed two further product candidates from IMD: one is a new functional ingredient, which shows promise in the area of weight management and the other provides beneficial effects for heart health.
Using its unique technology platform, IMD can correlate chemical structures with biological activity on a broad, unparalleled scale (“IMD Bioprofiling™”). During their ongoing collaboration, Cognis and IMD have utilized this technology platform to identify novel active functional ingredients for specific food applications. The latest breakthrough has led to the discovery of two natural product candidates that are consistent with the global trends for active weight management and a proactive approach to heart health.
Cognis has now licensed two active ingredients supporting weight management from IMD, the first of which was licensed in October 2008. “Both ingredients exhibit very promising in vitro and preclinical in vivo results. Extract development has been finalized and subsequent safety studies are now under way,” says Dr. Sigrid Krämer, project manager for Cognis cooperation with IMD.
The second new ingredient represents a cardiovascular product candidate for heart health, which has shown interesting efficacy results in in vitro tests. Cognis plans to carry out preclinical studies later this year.
Comments Bernhard Müller, Director Global R&D / Technology Cognis Nutrition & Health: “For Cognis, innovations are not just another growth driver, but a crucial part of our corporate strategy focusing on wellness and sustainability. Ensuring a continuous stream of innovations is therefore among our top priorities. By licensing these two new active ingredients, we are strengthening our product portfolio in the important growth market of ingredients for the functional foods and dietary supplements industries.”
Says Dr. Thomas Henkel, Managing Director of InterMed Discovery: “The discovery of these new ingredients proves the strength of IMD’s food ingredient pipeline as well as the power of our technology platform in generating a sustainable stream of innovative product candidates in a short period of time. Working with Cognis allows our ideas to be developed into valuable innovative and proprietary active ingredients for specific applications through to market-readiness. At the moment, there are more ingredients at the exploratory stage.” Bernard Becker, also Managing Director of InterMed Discovery, adds: “This success further strengthens our confidence in our business model by adding to the continuous growth of our company.”
Under the terms of a licensing agreement, Cognis will take the lead in the product development process and will be responsible for marketing any resulting products. In return, InterMed Discovery will receive an upfront payment and royalties.
In March 2008, both companies announced a strategic cooperation. Under this agreement, Cognis can use InterMed Discovery’s natural product data base – the world’s largest of its kind – and has exclusive access to selected potential active ingredients for specific applications in functional foods and dietary supplements.
Cognis is a worldwide supplier of innovative specialty chemicals and nutritional ingredients, with a particular focus on the areas of wellness and sustainability. The company employs about 6,000 people, and it operates production sites and service centers in 30 countries. Cognis has dedicated its activities to a high level of sustainability and delivers natural source raw materials and ingredients for food, nutrition and healthcare markets, and the cosmetics, detergents and cleaners industries. Another main focus is on products for a number of other industries, such as coatings and inks, lubricants, as well as agriculture and mining.
Cognis is owned by private equity funds advised by Permira, GS Capital Partners, and SV Life Sciences. In 2007, Cognis recorded sales of about 2.8 billion euros and an Adjusted EBITDA (operating result) of 360 million euros.
About InterMed Discovery
InterMed Discovery is an emerging world class natural product lead-discovery company, driving innovation through the generation of novel product candidates for the life science, food and cosmetics industries. Using one of the most powerful validated natural product discovery engines, InterMed Discovery generates proprietary product pipelines of early stage pharmaceuticals and functional ingredients and also supports partners in research and lead generation. Biologically characterised product leads are identified using IMD BIOPROFILING™ and NPSILICO®, which together comprise a proprietary bioinformatics platform drawing on screening results compiled over many years, complemented by primary biological and chemical research on natural products. InterMed Discovery adds to this the industry’s largest collections of pure compounds, sample fractions and mixtures as its source for potential natural product leads. The Company is located in Dortmund, Germany and was founded in 2006 as a management buyout of the Natural Products Research Unit of Bayer Healthcare. Further information on InterMed Discovery can be found at www.intermed-discovery.com.