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Date [ 2014-05-28, 05:30 ]

LION Corporation will be working with A*STAR’s Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (IMRE) to develop safer products.

(Singapore=Koreanpress) Benjamin Kim  =  A*STAR scientists and LION Corporation are using a multi-purpose, highly customisable molecule and all natural material formulations to develop products that kill bacteria and keep laundry smelling fresh. All this without relying on chemical biocides that are found in some current household products. Such a move also prevents the growth of biocide-resistant bacteria in the long run. Legislation is being debated in the USA to ban such biocides in the future.
LION, a major manufacturer of detergents, soaps, medications, oral hygiene products and other toiletries, will leverage IMRE’s technology to develop new improved formulations for their products. The company signed a Research Collaboration Agreement (RCA) with IMRE to develop this technology.

This agreement is the first of its kind for LION in Singapore. Both organisations are also looking to set up a joint laboratory at IMRE where scientists from IMRE and LION can work on the project together.
Most household products are a mix of surfactants for removing dirt, fragrance enhancers and chemical biocides to kill germs. Some of the surfactants and chemical biocides ultimately leach into the environment through water run-off. IMRE has been working on a host of all-purpose, natural polymers that are more environmentally friendly as part of IMRE’s Consumer Care Technology Programme.

The multi-purpose molecule being used in the project is one of more than a hundred proprietary molecules that IMRE has accumulated in its fast-growing polymer bank.
“The specially created polymer molecules and materials used in the project are unique to IMRE,” said the lead IMRE researcher for the project, Dr Loh Xian Jun, who is also the Programme Manager for A*STAR’s Personal Care Programme.

 Dr Loh explained that the highly stable and customisable base polymer molecule can be “accessorised” with different polymer chains to suit different purposes. Such base polymers form the backbone for a multitude of different molecular combinations that can be tailor-made to suit different functions, from anti-bacteria to fragrance-enhancement, in one molecule. “We are building a library of such multi-purpose molecules that can be pulled out at any time to cater to specific needs of different companies.”
“LION has been promoting its international operations with a focus on Asia, and we have been keeping our eye on Singapore as a regional R&D hub,” informed Dr Toshio Kakui, Director and Executive Officer of LION Corporation.  He added, “A*STAR’s IMRE, a research institute with first-rate polymer technologies, has a good reputation and has collaborated with a variety of companies around the world. Therefore, LION is confident that this research collaboration with IMRE will lead to an enhancement of LION’s own technological capabilities and development of innovative products.”
“People know LION because their products penetrate almost every household, from detergents to shampoo, and from mouthwash to toothpaste. Isn’t it a wonderful opportunity to collaborate with a company as innovative and successful as LION?” said Professor Andy Hor, Executive Director of IMRE. “This is how we see the benefit of research in polymers and gels – shaping lives and improving living”.
The research team expects development of the new formulation to be completed by the second half of 2015.


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