Following 18 months of extensive R&D, TurtleTree has officially announced its production of LF+, the world's ﬁrst sustainable bovine lactoferrin created using precision fermentation technology.
A key part of the company's ongoing work with cultivated dairy, precision fermentation is a state-of-the-art process that uses microbial hosts for the mass production of ingredients. Compared to traditional methods, precision fermentation offers far greater efficiency and volume, enabling viable production at commercial scale.
In pioneering the use of this technology for lactoferrin and its inclusion in food, TurtleTree is uniquely poised to be a frontrunner in the highly sought-after functional protein market. Having assembled a world-class team of industry-leading talents to work on this project, the company will now accelerate its development efforts for LF+ in order to achieve a commercial launch in 2023.
Discussing the decision to step into this new space, TurtleTree Chief Strategist, Max Rye, stated: "Looking at recent events like the infant formula shortage in the US and the disruptions in food supply arising from COVID-19, we felt that we could no longer sit on the sidelines. With LF+, we see a way to contribute towards better nutrition in the here and now while our longer-term dairy projects remain in the pipeline. The hope is to ultimately take a proactive approach in creating the world we want to see and genuinely make a difference during a time of need." Elaborating on the value that lactoferrin can bring to consumer nutrition, TurtleTree's Chief Scientific Officer, Aletta Schnitzler, explained: "Lactoferrin is one of the key ingredients that gives human milk its uniquely beneficial properties. From immune support to gut health, lactoferrin has been shown to provide an extensive list of health-related benefits."
In a 2022 review, researchers from Poland highlighted a fascinating function of lactoferrin as a guardian of the human genome, capable of modulating cell cycle activity and DNA repair. This adds to a growing volume of scientific literature that has already shown lactoferrin's ability to modulate immune responses and regulate iron absorption, among other properties.
Schnitzler continues: "To be able to bring these benefits to the public in a meaningful way, we need to be able to produce lactoferrin both sustainably and at commercial volume. In pursuit of this goal, we've hired some of the foremost minds in precision fermentation including Dr. Amanda Fischer, our Director of Precision Fermentation, and Jung Yi, our Director of Process Engineering and Automation. We've been delighted by their work so far, and we'll eagerly welcome more opportunities to add to the team should the right talents come along."
Having already made ground with regulators, investors, and key industry leaders, TurtleTree will now seek new opportunities with commercial partners as it works towards getting LF+ to market.
Echoing this outlook, TurtleTree CEO, Fengru Lin, commented: "The sustainable production of lactoferrin through precision fermentation is a perfect ﬁt for our mission of nourishing both the planet and its people. To be able to produce this remarkable ingredient at commercial scale—in a way that's both environmentally and economically viable over the long-term—is an absolute game-changer. It means new possibilities for adult nutrition, athletic supplementation, and mothers who want the best nutrition for their families. The possibilities are endless, and we can't wait to bring this vision to reality."
TurtleTree is a biotech company dedicated to producing a new generation of nutrition—one that's better for the planet, the animals, and people everywhere. Utilizing cutting-edge precision fermentation technology and proprietary cell-based innovations, the company is creating better-for-you ingredients sustainably and affordably, with benefits that extend beyond the dining table and into the heart of humanity.
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