Unigen Expands Research Capabilities

Lacey, WA  Unigen, a leader in natural products research and development at the cellular and gene level, announced that they have recently purchased a 500 MHz Varian Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR) machine with Protasis CapNMR probe to expand their natural product research to the molecular level.

Over the past fifty years nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy has become the preeminent technique for identifying and determining the structure of organic compounds. Typically, NMR is used in conjunction with other types of spectroscopy and chemical analysis to fully confirm a molecule’s complicated structure. This 500 MHz NMR machine with the microprobe will offer a great level of sensitivity and allow the characterization of a very small amount of sample (often less than a milligram) without destroying the material. Unigen has employed the expert services of Ping Jiao, who has a PhD. from the University of Iowa in Natural Products Chemistry, to manage the machine and conduct structure elucidation.

“This significant capital investment will lead to double or triple the number of compounds to be identified in discovery research at Unigen,” said Dr. Qi Jia, Unigen’s Chief Scientific Officer. “The high field NMR coupled with microprobe 96-well format autosampler and recently-licensed ACD software will bring in a new platform for dereplication of bioactive fractions from high throughput screening. This allows for identifying micrograms of compounds isolated from marine and microbial sources and vastly increases the likelihood of finding novel molecular structures.” Since early 2007, Unigen has expanded its natural product research from high plants to marine life, and will move the discovery program into microbial, fungi, insects and other natural resources in the near future.

Unigen’s commitment to industry-leading research is rare in the natural products marketplace. This specialized equipment, which will be directed towards Unigen’s extensive library of plant extracts, only furthers the abilities of the company to serve a wide range of customers. Unigen works with both small and multinational companies interested in proprietary compounds for functional foods, dietary supplements, cosmetics/personal care and pharmaceuticals.

About Unigen
Unigen is a leading natural products research and development company and proprietary ingredients supplier. The company is dedicated to the discovery of botanically-derived therapeutic compounds that address consumer health needs and help improve quality of life.

Their research and discovery includes extensive work at the human cell, gene and molecular level. Unigen focuses on identifying and studying the unique constituents of medicinal botanicals and then formulating proprietary raw materials for use in nutraceutical, cosmetic, functional food and pharmaceutical products.

Unigen employs 80 people, 55 of whom are scientists. Contributing to their vast library of novel botanical ingredients, the current facilities include high-throughput screening and cell culture labs, a structure characterization (NMR) lab and a large-scale manufacturing facility. Unigen is part of the ECONET global family of health and natural product companies, which has operations in the United States, Europe, Korea, Mexico, Canada, Russia and China. www.UnigenScience.com

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