HMOs, a common solid component in human breast milk, are rarely found in milk derived from other mammals, and research evidences its role in brain development in newborns, with more recent studies theorizing that it may have benefits for immune support and modulating of the inflammatory response. It is also believed to have probiotic benefits by virtue of its capacity to increase the number of bifidobacteria present in the intestinal microbiome.
Kyowa Hakko Bio reports that it was the first company globally to establish an industrial-scale HMO production system, and the actual application of this system will be the core of the company’s medium- to long-term growth strategy, as it plans to supply HMOs to other companies and utilize the facility for its own product development, and products for the Kirin Group, a Japanese pharmaceutical company that makes specialty drugs.
Under Kirin Holdings’ medium-term business plan, Kyowa Hakko Bio reports that it will make fundamental expansions to its quality assurance system and other operations, and that it aims to grow into a global-scale specialty fermentation manufacturer with a large number of product pipelines in the future.
The facility, which is located in Rayong Province, Thailand, is slated to begin operation in the summer of 2022, where it will manufacture three HMO products: 2FL, 3SL, and 6SL, with a production capacity of approximately 300 metric tons per year.