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Senomyx-Firmenich Cooling Agent Deal

Posted: January 3, 2008

Under a new agreement, Senomyx (San Diego, CA) will develop proprietary cooling agents in collaboration with Firmenich (Geneva, Switzerland). According to the three-year deal, Firmenich will pay Senomyx undisclosed research fees and subsequent payments upon meeting key milestones.

Using its screening technology, Senomyx has reportedly identified a number of cooling compounds that outstrip many cooling agents on the market (in terms of intensity), including menthol and WS-3 (n-ethyl-p-menthane-3-carboxamide). Firmenich will have exclusive rights to the compounds developed under the collaboration, which are expected to find application in OTC health care and oral care products, confectioneries, beverages, and foods. 

Senomyx has previously entered into agreements with other companies in the development of bitter taste blockers, umami boosters and sweet enhancers.

Of the deal, Senomyx president and CEO Kent Snyder said, "After careful consideration, we determined that working with Firmenich could provide us with the best opportunity to maximize the long term revenue potential of our Cool Flavor program."

Firmenich CEO Patrick Firmenich added, "Many currently available cooling agents have deficiencies that restrict their utility, including weak cooling characteristics, bitter off-tastes, limited solubility, and non-proprietary status ... [T]he combined use of our proprietary delivery systems should further enhance the benefits of the new cooling compounds in certain applications."