Unilever, Arzeda  partner on AI generated performance-enhancing enzyme

By Kingsley Odii

Unilever, a multinational consumer goods giant has partnered with Arzeda a synthetic biotechnology company to utilize artificial intelligence (AI) in the development of performance-boosting enzymes for use in laundry detergents. The companies will use Arzeda’s AI-powered enzyme design technology to create enzymes that can break down dirt and stains more effectively thereby reducing the need for harsher chemicals.

The collaboration between Unilever and Arzeda aims to enhance the efficacy and sustainability of Unilever’s products by designing enzymes with improved performance. By utilizing AI technology, the partners hope to accelerate the enzyme design process and develop novel enzymes that can perform specific tasks more efficiently.

Enzymes are proteins that act as catalysts in biological processes. They are commonly used in laundry detergents to break down stains and can be more effective than traditional chemical cleaners. However, natural enzymes are often not stable enough to withstand the harsh conditions of laundry detergents and synthetic enzymes can be expensive to produce.

Arzeda’s technology uses AI to design new enzymes with specific properties and then combines these designs with robotic screening and advanced protein engineering to create high-performing enzymes. The partnership with Unilever will focus on developing enzymes for use in laundry detergents but the technology could also be applied to other industries.

AI enables the analysis and prediction of protein structures and their functionalities, enabling the identification of promising enzyme candidates. This approach saves significant time and resources in the traditional trial-and-error process, potentially revolutionizing enzyme development.

The development of more efficient enzymes could have several benefits including reducing the environmental impact of laundry detergents by reducing the amount of water and energy needed to wash clothes. It could also improve the performance of other cleaning products such as dishwashing liquids and surface cleaners.

Commenting on the fresh development and partnership with Arzeda, Peter ter Kulve, Unilever Home Care President said:  “As part of Unilever’s Clean Future strategy, we’re investing in cutting-edge technologies to develop the next generation of sustainable, high-performance cleaning products.

“The progress made in just 18 months with Arzeda’s technology shows how the convergence of AI and biology is a game-changer for an industry like home care.”

Speaking on the new introduction also, Arzeda CEO and founder, Alexandre Zanghellini said: “As we continue to scale up production, we’re extremely excited and optimistic about the incredible potential this partnership has for consumers and our planet. The partnership will also advance our commitment to reach net zero emissions from all our products by 2039”.

The partnership between Unilever and Arzeda showcases the growing trend of integrating AI into biotechnology and industrial processes. By harnessing the power of AI, these companies aim to develop more sustainable and effective products, benefiting both consumers and the environment.




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


    No comments found.