Natural mould protectants
Pomecins™ are Evolva’s proprietary compounds that prevent mould and yeast growth, with potential uses in food and crop protection as well as consumer health care. They are small molecules of plant origin, deriving from a pathway that occurs in pomegranates. Multiple patent applications have been filed regarding the compositions and uses.
Evolva has decided to exploit the Pomecin™ family of antifungals in collaboration with partners, with only limited further investment by Evolva beyond their current stage.
APPLICATIONS IN FOOD PROTECTION
About one-third of the world’s food is wasted. Losses due to spoilage threaten global food security and negatively impact the profits of both food companies and retailers. The market in food protection compounds is worth about USD 1 billion, of which natural solutions account for about 25%. At the same time a growing and increasingly global food supply chain has increased the need for good shelf life and food protection. Novel, natural microbial protection solutions are therefore needed.
Pomecin™ A has the efficacy and other attributes ideal for applications in food protection, particularly as a fast-acting mould inhibitor against food spoilage yeasts and filamentous fungi.
We have made significant progress in defining the potency and efficacy spectrum of Pomecin™ A for common food spoilage organisms and important manufacturing processes. In recent studies, Pomecin™ A clearly outperformed comparator products in preservation of fresh beverages and demonstrated constant activity throughout the observation period
APPLICATIONS IN CROP PROTECTION
Loss of crops to fungal pathogens is an important constraint on world food supply, and annual sales of fungicides to protect crops from fungal infections amount to c. USD 8 billion. However, many fungal pathogens are becoming resistant to existing fungicides and finding new, safe compounds with novel mechanisms of action and low resistance rates is increasingly important.
Pomecin™ B has stability and production properties that make it particularly suitable for use in applications in crop protection, post-harvest processing of fruits, vegetables and grains as well as fungal infections of farmed fish and livestock.
We have developed a stable microemulsion formulation suitable for application on plants. Field studies against Downy mildew on grape vines have been completed. Formulated Pomecin™ B significantly reduced the disease intensity in a manner that was superior to commercial products and no phytotoxicity was observed. In a field study investigating its efficacy against rice blast disease, Pomecin™ B performed equal to or better than (in terms of resultant crop yield) the current market leading product (Tricyclazole) at 3-fold lower doses. Further studies are under way.
APPLICATION IN CONSUMER HEALTH CARE
Fungal infections are widespread and often refractory to treatment. They can affect nearly all parts of the human body, e.g., the scalp (dandruff), mouth (oral candidiasis) or foot (athletes’ foot and onychomycosis) as well as consumer health care products such as contact lenses and dentures. Particularly prevalent and difficult to treat are oral infections in immunocompromised and elderly and fungal infections of the nail.
We have developed innovative formulations for topical treatment of onychomycosis. We have also made significant progress in defining the utility of Pomecin™ A for use in treatment of fungal infections of the mouth. In 2012, we developed an innovative formulation of Pomecin™ A, showing excellent penetration of human nails.