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August 10, 2015

Bigelow Lab, Ole Miss collaboration moves forward

A five-year collaboration between Bigelow Laboratory for Ocean Sciences and the University of Mississippi already is producing results, according to the East Boothbay lab.

Bigelow said the collaboration, under way since 2013, has identified potential novel compounds that might one day be applied to treat malaria and some cancers.

Mainebiz wrote about the then-in-discussion collaboration and others the lab is seeking in an October 2012 article.

"We've had some positive hits for novel compounds using Ole Miss' nuclear magnetic resonance imaging equipment," Mike Lomas, director of Bigelow Lab's National Center for Marine Algae and Microbiota, said in a statement. "The next step is to grow these potentially new compounds in large enough quantities that will allow further analysis and testing to be completed."

The collaboration involves research and commercialization initiatives focused on marine biotechnology and including marine bioprospecting from Bigelow Lab's NCMA's algal collection, phamacognosy, medicinal chemistry and other pharmaceutical sciences.

According to Bigelow Lab's website, NCMA has the world's largest and most diverse collection of marine phytoplankton, with more than 2,800 strains of phytoplankton, bacteria and viruses.

In the initial phase of the agreement, NCMA has provided 200 strains of algal cultures to Erik Horn's lab at Ole Miss.

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