SAN DIEGO, CA and BOULDER, CO--(Marketwire - February 09, 2010) - OPX Biotechnologies, Inc.
(OPXBIO), a renewable biochemical and biofuel company, today announced that
it is progressing faster than plan in developing a commercial process for
producing bioacrylic. Since beginning pilot scale development six months
ago, the OPXBIO team has reduced bioacrylic production cost by 85 percent
toward the commercial target of $0.50 per pound. The company used its
proprietary EDGE™ (Efficiency Directed Genome Engineering) technology to
rapidly develop a microbe and bioprocess that, when fully optimized, will
produce bioacrylic at the rate, concentration, and yield needed for full
commercialization. Today, petroleum-based acrylic is an $8 billion global
market. It is used in a range of industrial and consumer products,
including paints, adhesives, diapers and detergents.
"OPXBIO's goal is to compete with petroleum-based chemicals and fuels on
both quality and price," said President and Chief Executive Officer of
OPXBIO, Charles R. Eggert (Chas). "We used our EDGE technology to rapidly
develop a bioprocess that, when operated at commercial scale will produce
bioacrylic equivalent in performance and cost to petroleum-based acrylic.
Our results validate our microbial and bioprocess engineering capabilities
and bolster confidence that we will achieve our performance and cost goals
by year-end 2010."
Eggert communicated news of OPXBIO's accelerated progress on its bioacrylic
process development during a presentation today at the Bio-Based Chemicals
Summit being held in San Diego.
The pilot scale bioacrylic process demonstration to be completed in 2010
will confirm commercial cost and performance viability as well as produce
bioacrylic for downstream customers to test for quality and performance.
With successful completion of its pilot scale development this year, OPXBIO
is planning a demonstration facility in 2011 and its first commercial plant
"We have always been very confident that OPXBIO's genome engineering
technology called EDGE, would allow us to develop commercially viable
microbes faster than the traditional approaches," said Chief Scientific
Officer and Founder of OPXBIO, Dr. Michael Lynch. "The fact that we were
able to reduce the effective cost of our bioacrylic by more than 85 percent
in just six months of pilot work confirms the power of EDGE."
Based on the success of its development efforts, OPXBIO has retained
Merrick & Company to design its demonstration and commercial manufacturing
plants, which will become operational in 2011 and 2013, respectively.
"We are pleased to be working with OPXBIO on the development of its
potentially game-changing biochemicals technology," said President and
Chief Executive Officer of Merrick, Ralph Christie.
About Merrick & Company
Merrick & Company is an engineering, architecture, design-build, surveying,
and geospatial solutions firm serving domestic and international clients in
the energy, security, life sciences, and infrastructure markets. Merrick
has eight U.S. offices, one in Canada and two in Mexico. The firm's highly
regarded Fuels and Energy Group specializes in the commercialization of
next generation biofuels and biochemicals technologies.
OPXBIO is a Colorado-based company using biotechnology to convert renewable
raw materials into biochemicals and biofuels. Applying its EDGE™
(Efficiency Directed Genome Engineering) technology, OPXBIO will
manufacture bio-based products that are more economical and sustainable
than petroleum-based alternatives. OPXBIO has already demonstrated
laboratory-scale production of several different biochemicals and biofuels
using renewable biomass as well as carbon dioxide and hydrogen feedstock.
The company currently is producing bioacrylic at pilot scale in advance of
opening a demonstration plant in 2011 and a full-scale commercial plant in
2013. The company also is developing strategic partnerships and joint
ventures for commercialization. OPXBIO has raised $22.4 million with
venture investors Mohr Davidow Ventures, Braemar Energy Ventures, Altira
Group, and X/Seed Capital.
For more information, visit www.opxbiotechnologies.com.