COLUMBIA, Md., Dec 13, 2007 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX/ -- Martek Biosciences Corporation announced today that it has entered into a multi-year DHA and ARA license and supply agreement for infant formula with IlDong Foodis, an affiliated company of IlDong Pharmaceutical. Under the terms of the agreement, Martek will serve as the exclusive ARA supplier for all IlDong Foodis infant formula products in South Korea.
Martek manufactures nutritional oils that contain the long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids DHA and ARA, both of which are naturally present in breast milk. Clinical studies have demonstrated benefits for infants receiving formula supplemented with DHA and ARA. Martek's proprietary blend of DHA and ARA, marketed under the brand names life'sDHA(TM) and life'sARA(TM), is currently used in over 90 percent of U.S. infant formulas. Additionally, infant formula containing life'sDHA and life'sARA has been consumed by over 25 million infants in over 70 countries worldwide.
"This new agreement is another important step in Martek's effort to expand its international presence in the infant formula market," said Brian Sparg, vice president of global nutrition for Martek. "Our partnership with IlDong Foodis further demonstrates that companies worldwide understand the importance of adding Martek's DHA and ARA to infant formula for infant health and development."
IlDong Foodis, an affiliated company of IlDong Pharmaceutical, sells infant formula, infant cereals, powdered beverages for adults and children, fruit juices and other food products. IlDong Pharmaceutical is a South Korean-based manufacturer and distributor of pharmaceuticals, as well as a manufacturer of raw ingredients such as probiotics.
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 and mothers 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 development and function, and there are numerous studies currently underway to investigate its role in decreasing the prevalence of certain neurological disorders and certain heart health disorders. ARA, a long-chain omega-6 fatty acid, is the principal omega-6 in the brain and abundant in other cells throughout the body. Like DHA, ARA is important for proper brain development in infants. It is also a precursor to a group of hormone-like substances called eicosanoids that play a role in immunity, blood clotting and other vital functions in the body.
Martek Biosciences Corporation (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.