The multifarious flora which may be admired in Frankfurt's Palmengarten botanical garden comprises an inexhaustible reservoir of natural substances essential for the organisms, for each of these biomolecules fulfils a specific function – be it in connection with cellular metabolic processes or with respect to complex cell differentiation steps during periods of growth.
Not only are these natural substances useful for the plants themselves, they are just as versatile when it comes to their application in foods, cosmetics, drugs, freshness retainers or cleaning agents. We have a major part of this "toolbox of nature" available in our BioArchive, and in this edition of BLICKWINKEL, we shine a light on the research we are conducting for which market segments by means of bioactive natural substances and which specific expertise is required for success.
In a guest article, Prof. Dr. Joachim J. Schmitt of Fulda University of Applied Sciences explains how natural substances may help make a whole range of foods healthier. BRAIN's PerillicActive development programme, which is also presented in this edition of BLICKWINKEL, deals with concrete product ideas for nature-based freshness and product stability on the basis of fermented orange oil.
Dr. Karsten Siems und Dr. Lars Ole Haustedt of AnalytiCon Discovery GmbH get their say in great detail. As the market leader in the field of natural substance libraries with access to some 15 per cent of all known natural substances, the Potsdam-based member of the BRAIN group makes a valuable contribution to programmes such as DOLCE, which is all about natural sweeteners and sweet taste enhancers. The "Power of Analytics", an article about the Analytics Technology Platform coordinated by BRAIN's Dr. Simon Seibert, highlights other essential fields of expertise and USPs which round off and stimulate the work undertaken at BRAIN.
Sweet, fatty, salty
Research in the interests of a healthy and tasty diet: Modifying the composition and original forms of naturally occurring plants is an art that humankind has been constantly developing and fine-tuning for thousands of years. Professor Dr Joachim J. Schmitt describes current research work at Fulda University of Applied Sciences to select food constituents according to how they alter taste sensations so as to promote health.
Tracking down new natural products
BLICKWINKEL spoke with Dr Karsten Siems and Dr Lars Ole Haustedt (AnalytiCon Discovery) about the special attraction of plant and microbial secondary metabolites for sustainable natural foods and cosmetics.
Perilla ingredients based on fermented orange oil
PerillicActive is a BRAIN programme for developing natural active ingredients based on the fermented oil from orange peel or other citrus fruits.
Plant-based bioactive ingredients
BRAIN develops nature-based bioactive ingredients for a multitude of applications and different target industries. The unique library of natural products held by subsidiary AnalytiCon Discovery is of key importance for these purposes.
The Power of Analytics
Biotechnological research and development would be virtually impossible without instrumental analytics. This is also true at BRAIN, where Dr Simon Seibert coordinates the Analytics Technology Platform. As well as having a state-of-the art pool of equipment, its special strengths lie in its close interlinkage with specific research projects, its methodological flexibility and the curiosity of its staff.
Urban Plant Exoticism
Dr Hilke Steinecke and Dr Matthias Jenny tell us about the Palmengarten (‘palm garden’) in Frankfurt am Main, where an incredible variety of plant species are nurtured and cherished. The Palmengarten also grows edible plants that we use in our kitchens and that provide popular herbs and spices.
Picture spread "Urban Plant Exoticism"
Images from Anja Jahn are marked by a special intimacy. She takes time with her subjects and approaches them with feeling and respect. Her series of photographs were taken at Palmengarten Frankfurt in 2018.