Developing new molecular entities from sustainable marine sources


Marisurf project develops eco-friendly molecules such as surfactants, and emulsifiers to replace their synthetic counterparts, mainly petroleum-based, which are usually non-biodegradable and mostly toxic.

Surfactants and emulsifiers form an indispensable component in almost every sector of modern industry and have a total global production estimate of over 13 million tonnes per year because of their capacity to lower the surface tension, and mix water-soluble and oily substances together, respectively. In this sense, Marisurf wants to satisfy an increasing consumer demand for natural and environmentally friendly ingredients, as well as changing government legislation requiring a shift toward industrial use of renewable and less toxic compounds. This is being done with marine-derived bacteria originally isolated for their ability to degrade oils.

Within the project, Leitat is responsible for the assays of these novel agents for different industrial applications in the pharma, food, and cosmetic sectors. This includes the evaluation of candidates for their performance in applications specific to the needs of industrial end-users such as nutrient drug interactions, bacterial dysbiosis, and anti-inflammatory, anti-aging and moisturizing effects.

More information about the project here.