COLUMBIA, Md., Aug 23, 2007 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX News Network/ -- Martek Biosciences, a DHA omega-3 market leader, announced today that the Ministry of Health in China has authorized the use of the company's life'sDHA(TM) as a novel food ingredient. This new designation will permit the immediate use of Martek's life'sDHA(TM) in foods, beverages and supplements in China for persons older than twelve months. Since 2001, Martek's life'sDHA(TM) and life'sARA(TM) (arachidonic acid), an omega-6 fatty acid, have been used in infant formula throughout China.
DHA (docosahexaenoic acid) omega-3 is a long-chain omega-3 fatty acid that serves as a primary building block for the brain and the eyes and supports brain, eye and cardiovascular health throughout life. There is a large and growing body of scientific evidence demonstrating that people of all ages, from infants to aging adults, benefit from an adequate supply of DHA omega-3 in their diets. Scientific reviews have noted the importance of DHA omega-3 in proper brain and eye function, and there are studies currently underway to investigate its role in decreasing the prevalence of certain neurological disorders.
Martek's life'sDHA(TM) is unique in the market because it is derived from a sustainable and vegetarian source. Made from microalgae under tightly controlled manufacturing conditions, life'sDHA(TM) is free of oceanic contaminants that may be present in certain fish or fish oils. Microalgae are the only vegetarian source of DHA omega-3, the key omega-3 for brain and eye development and function.
Martek opened a representative office in Shanghai earlier this year. Qingdao Samuels Industrial and Commercial Company, Ltd. has been appointed as Martek's distributor for life'sDHA(TM) in China. Samuels will be responsible for the selling and distribution activities surrounding life'sDHA(TM) in food (excluding infant formula), beverage and supplement applications in China, Hong Kong and Macao. Additional details and contact information for Samuels may be obtained at http://www.samuels.cn or from Martek.
This initial approval by the Ministry of Health is part of the regulatory process applicable to Chinese novel foods and continues through August 5, 2009. Martek may then apply for a final novel food certificate.
Martek Biosciences Corporation (Nasdaq: MATK) is a leader in the innovation and development of DHA omega-3 products that promote health and wellness through every stage of life. The company produces life'sDHA(TM), a sustainable and vegetarian source of the omega-3 fatty acid DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), for use in foods, beverages, infant formula, and supplements. The company also produces life'sARA(TM) (arachidonic acid), an omega-6 fatty acid, from a sustainable, vegetarian source, for use in infant formula. For more information on Martek Biosciences Corporation, visit http://www.martek.com.
Sections of this release contain forward-looking statements. These statements are based upon numerous assumptions which Martek cannot control and involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ. These statements should be understood in light of the risk factors set forth in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including, but not limited to, the company's Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended October 31, 2006 and other filed reports on Form 10-K, Form 10-K/A, Form 10-Q and Form 8-K.