Hygiene group awarded £350k grant to study anti-viral properties of seaweed


AIM-listed hygiene group Byotrol has been awarded a £350,000 grant to research the anti-viral properties of certain common forms of seaweed.

The Daresbury-based business has secured the funding fillip from Innovate UK.

The total award of £350,000 is over 16 months, of which £108,000 will be paid to Byotrol’s academic partner, the Molecular Virology Research Group at the University of Liverpool, led by Prof James Stewart.

The grant is specifically for research into seaweeds in sanitising products, but Byotrol said it believes the resulting discoveries will have significance outside of its core markets, including potentially animal feedstuffs.

The grant award will help Byotrol build further on its research and development programme into developing biocides from sustainable sources.

This programme, which Byotrol has been exploring for many years has demonstrated high potency anti-viral action from extracts from commonly-occurring seaweeds, the results of which have already supported a new patent filing by the group.

Byotrol expects to file further patents as the programme develops.

Trevor Francis, chief technology officer of Byotrol, said: “We are delighted that Innovate UK is supporting our research into the anti-viral properties of seaweeds and we are very pleased to be working on this project with Prof James Stewart’s excellent team at the University of Liverpool.

“It is a very exciting area of development for Byotrol.”