AvidBiotics and Ecolab Working to Develop New Technology Targeting Food Safety in Meat

Companies agree to collaborate on Avidocin(TM) Protein Platform Targeting E. coli O157:H7 Contamination in Red Meat

Jan 11, 2010, 08:13 ET from AvidBiotics Corp.

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. and ST. PAUL, Minn., Jan. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- AvidBiotics Corp. and Ecolab Inc. today announced an agreement under which they will work to develop a new technology to dramatically reduce the presence of the dangerous pathogen E. coli O157:H7 in red meat products.

The companies' intent is to successfully commercialize AvidBiotics' proprietary protein-based antibacterial technology which can be targeted against specific bacterial pathogens. This approach could yield a versatile food processing aid that is non-chemical and non-toxic. While the platform technology may be applicable to numerous food pathogens, the companies are first targeting the dangerous food pathogen, E. coli, in red meat. According to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over 70,000 people are infected with E. coli O157:H7 each year in the United States, at least 2,000 are hospitalized, and about 60 die as a direct result of E. coli infection and its complications.

"As the global leader in the food safety industry with a history of innovative products, Ecolab is the perfect partner for us," said David W. Martin, CEO of AvidBiotics. "Combining AvidBiotics' innovation and expertise in molecular biology with Ecolab's diverse technical competencies and market position will allow us to accelerate the path to commercialization. Ecolab's commitment to collaborate with us validates our approach to combat these deadly pathogens."

Bacterial contamination of the food supply is an increasing public concern. Ecolab and AvidBiotics are responding to these concerns by combining the innovative technologies of AvidBiotics with the commercial expertise of Ecolab to find new and innovative solutions to the processing of food to help ensure its safety.

Timothy P. Mulhere, Ecolab's senior vice president and general manager, Food & Beverage North America, commented, saying, "Ecolab is committed to helping customers reduce their food safety risks, offering multiple interventions to help ensure a safer global food supply. We continue to seek innovative programs and emerging technologies that can provide more effective solutions for our customers. We will work with AvidBiotics to further develop this technology and determine its efficacy and viability in the marketplace. Early testing of this new technology indicates the potential to reduce E. coli O157:H7 levels significantly better than current solutions."

About AvidBiotics

AvidBiotics Corp. is a biotherapeutics company with a proprietary technology platform focused on the development of protein products targeting bacterial disease. Founded in 2004, by David Martin, Jr., Jeffery F. Miller, and James Knighton, based on technology discovered by Dr. Miller and colleagues, AvidBiotics has technology that enables diversification of protein structures in a precise manner. The core technology has direct applicability to human therapeutics and diagnostics, veterinary medicine, agriculture and food safety, research tools and reagents. AvidBiotics is headquartered in South San Francisco, California. For more information please go to www.avidbiotics.com or contact Jim Knighton at (650) 873-1141 (jim@avidbiotics.com).

About Ecolab

With sales of $6 billion and more than 26,000 associates, Ecolab Inc. (NYSE: ECL) is the global leader in cleaning, sanitizing, food safety and infection prevention products and services. Ecolab delivers comprehensive programs and services to foodservice, food and beverage processing, healthcare, and hospitality markets in more than 160 countries. More news and information is available at www.ecolab.com.

SOURCE AvidBiotics Corp.