Actinogen is dedicated to the discovery and isolation of a group of environmental bacteria known as the actinomycetes. These bacteria are a unique group that can exist as free bacteria, in fungal-like mycelial forms, and as ‘resting spores’. They also consist of genera that are either aerobic and grow best at ambient temperatures or are anaerobic and can grow at high temperatures.
Historically the actinomycetes have been shown to also be able to use a wide variety of unusual nutrient sources. While utilizing these nutritional sources and while “switching” from one growth phase to another they often produce unusual bioactive molecules that have proven to be useful to man. Some well known commercial examples are the bacterial antibiotics, anti fungal agents, anticancer agents and a variety of other chemicals that are used in the control of physiological and physical processes.
In addition there are examples of actinomycetes that can degrade industrial waste such as oils, tars, byproducts from the tanning industry and domestic and industrial waste, and the rehabilitation of oil spills. Rare examples of isolates capable of digesting lignins, rubber and plastics also exist and await further exploitation.
Actinogen has proven high level expertise in the discovery and isolation of actinomycetes from WA soils, in particular, and the detection of bioactive molecules they produce, through both screening tests and so called dereplication methodology employing High Pressure Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) and Low Pressure Liquid chromatography (LPLC) techniques in particular.
During 2011, Actinogen began a bio-ethanol research program, which has had very encouraging results. Actinogen is focused on commercializing its bio-ethanol research by constructing a pilot plant and plans to eventually become a bio-ethanol producer.
Actinomycetes samples often come from the soil. Western Australia is well know for it’s diverse set of flora and fauna, which influence evolution of unique actinomycetes.