The goal is to develop semisynthetic artemisinin and introduce it by 2010.

The Institute for OneWorld Health, Amyris Biotechnologies, and sanofi-aventis will develop of semisynthetic artemisinin, a key ingredient in first-line malaria treatments. This partnership will build on technology originated by Jay Keasling, Ph.D., at the University of California, Berkeley.

The collaboration’s goal is to create a complementary source of nonseasonal, high-quality and affordable artemisinin to supplement the current botanical supply, explains OneWorld Health. The partners aim to introduce low-cost, semisynthetic artemisinin into the supply chain in 2010.

Under the terms of the agreement, OneWorld Health, Amyris, and sanofi-aventis will work jointly to develop and design pilot- and commercial-scale manufacturing processes.

OneWorld Health, U.C. Berkeley, and Amyris have been working together as the Artemisinin Project since late 2004 to develop a new, low-cost technology platform to produce artemisinin. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded this project. Sanofi-aventis represents the newest partner in this collaboration.

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