VANCOUVER, Aug. 26 /CNW/ - Burcon NutraScience Corporation (TSX - BU)
("Burcon" or the "Corporation") is pleased to announce today that it has
received a notice of allowance from the United States Patent and Trademark
Office for a patent application concerning important processing conditions for
producing Supertein(TM) canola protein isolate. Supertein(TM) is a
highly-soluble napin-rich canola protein isolate comprised principally of
albumin proteins. The functional properties of Supertein(TM) include excellent
solubility, the ability to form transparent solutions, foaming and nutrition.
Applications for Supertein(TM) include beverages, confectionery, aerated
desserts, and protein bars, among others.
"We are pleased to have received this notice of allowance from the United
States Patent and Trademark Office on a commercially-important patent
application," said Johann F. Tergesen, President and Chief Operating Officer,
adding, "Our goal is commercializing our exciting functional, renewable plant
proteins. Integral to that goal, we seek to protect the commercial opportunity
through a dynamic patent portfolio. As such, we will continue to aggressively
seek protection for new technologies as well as further protecting our current
The notice of allowance from the United States Patent and Trademark
Office as announced today relates specifically to processing conditions for
the production of Supertein(TM). In May 2007, Burcon announced that it was
granted two U.S. patents for the novel uses of Burcon's Supertein(TM) canola
protein isolate as a functional component in food compositions. The granted
patents cover important functional characteristics for the use of Burcon's
canola protein isolates in food compositions generally and canola protein
fortified beverages formulated from Supertein(TM).
For ten years, Burcon has, through its wholly-owned subsidiary, conducted
research at our Winnipeg Technical Centre aimed at commercializing plant
proteins with unique and valuable functional and nutritional properties. That
research is evidenced in the intellectual property portfolio that we are
developing. To-date, our patent portfolio consists of 90 issued patents in
various countries of the world, including 8 issued U.S. patents over our
protein extraction technology and protein product uses, and in excess of 200
additional pending patent applications, 65 of which are U.S. patent
applications. Our patents and patent applications can be grouped into three
1) Protecting our novel protein extraction and purification production
2) Protecting the "applications," or "uses" of Puratein(R) canola
protein isolate, Supertein(TM) canola protein isolate, and
CLARISOY(TM) soy protein isolate; for example as functional food and
beverage ingredients; and
3) Protecting the "signature characteristics" of our protein products
Burcon has been granted patents or has filed patent applications all
along the processing chain from seed selection through to drying of the
protein products. Our application patents are aimed at what we perceive to be
the most important uses of our proteins, from beverages to mayonnaise/sauces
and baked goods. Lastly, our proteins themselves - Puratein(R) (a
cruciferin-rich canola protein isolate); Supertein(TM) (a napin rich canola
protein isolate) and CLARISOY(TM) (a 100% acid-soluble soy protein with an
excellent flavor profile) - have unique signature characteristics which we
have sought to protect.
Although many of Burcon's patents and applications are publicly
available, it has come to Burcon's attention that there is an enduring
misunderstanding among the investment community with regard to Burcon's
technology and, in particular, with respect to the meal used in Burcon's
patented protein extraction and purification process for producing Puratein(R)
canola protein isolate and Supertein(TM) canola protein isolate.
The misunderstanding appears to be driven by a Canaccord Adams research
report on Bio-Extraction Inc. authored by Sara Elford, CFA and co-authored by
Jeffrey Leung, dated August 8, 2008 ("the Canaccord Adams Report").
In the Canaccord Adams Report, the authors incorrectly state the
following about Burcon's canola protein extraction and purification process:
"Their starting point is the meal produced from conventional extraction
processes. Unlike Bioexx meal, this meal has been exposed to high temperatures
and this fact makes the process of protein concentration/separation
technically challenging and expensive."
The above statement about Burcon is false.
Although Burcon requested a retraction of the statement within weeks of
the original publication, Canaccord Adams has so far refused to do so.
Burcon would like to clarify the issue by stating the following points:
- Burcon's canola protein extraction and purification process does not
use, "meal produced from conventional extraction processes".
- The starting meal in Burcon's canola protein extraction and
purification process has not been, "exposed to high temperatures".
- In two separate Burcon press releases dated February 23, 2006 and
August 24, 2006 Burcon announced patents that it had been granted
titled, "Protein Extraction from Canola Oilseed Meal" (US patent
6,992,173) and "Enhanced Oilseed Protein Recovery," (US patent
7,087,720) respectively. These patents relate to Burcon's protein
extraction and purification process and specifically disclose that
the process does not use conventional canola meal that has been
subjected to high temperatures.
- The February 23rd, 2006 press release contained the following
sentence in the very first paragraph:
United States Patent Number 6,992,173 B2 - "Protein Extraction from
Canola Oilseed Meal" - covers an improved process for the recovery of
protein from canola oilseed meal and other oilseed meals. Both the
amount and quality of protein isolate are improved through processing
modifications to the input oilseed meal instead of the use of
conventional meal. (underline added for emphasis)
Burcon's granted patents (including the two patents referenced in the
news releases from 2006 above: which deal with the production of oilseed meals
tailored to Burcon's protein extraction and purification process) and many of
Burcon's sixty-five additional U.S. patent applications can be viewed through
the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office's website at www.uspto.org
About Burcon NutraScience
Burcon is a leader in nutrition, health and wellness in the field of
functional, renewable plant proteins. Since 1999, Burcon has developed a
portfolio of composition, application, and process patents originating from
our core protein extraction and purification technology. We are developing the
world's first commercial canola proteins, Puratein(R) and Supertein(TM) with
unique functional and nutritional attributes, and CLARISOY(TM), a
revolutionary soy protein isolate which is 100% soluble and completely
transparent in acidic solutions. Our team of highly specialized scientists and
engineers work from our own research facility to develop and optimize
environmentally sound technologies. To-date, our patent portfolio consists of
90 issued patents in various countries, including 8 issued U.S. patents, and
in excess of 200 additional pending patent applications, 65 of which are U.S.
ON BEHALF OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
"Johann F. Tergesen"
Johann F. Tergesen
Burcon NutraScience Corporation is a publicly listed on the Toronto Stock
Exchange under the symbol "BU". For more information on Burcon, visit
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks
and uncertainties. These forward-looking statements relate to, among other
things, the Corporation's, plans and timing for the introduction or
enhancement of our products, statements about future market conditions, supply
and demand conditions, and other expectations, intentions and plans contained
in this press release that are not historical fact. Our expectations regarding
the prospect for future success depend upon our ability to develop and sell
products, which we do not produce today and cannot be sold without further
research and development. When used in this press release, the words "goal",
"intend", "believes", "potential", "expected", "anticipates", "will be", and
similar expressions, generally identify forward- looking statements. These
statements reflect our current expectations. They are subject to a number of
risks and uncertainties. In light of the many risks and uncertainties
surrounding the development of a source of protein from canola meal, you
should understand that we cannot assure you that the forward looking
statements contained in this press release will be realized.
For further information:
For further information: Jade Cheng, Chief Financial Officer, Burcon
NutraScience Corporation, (604) 733-0896, (888) 408-7960 toll-free,
firstname.lastname@example.org, www.burcon.ca; AXINO AG, Wolfgang Seybold, Investor
Relations Europe, AXINO AG, Konigstrasse 26, 70173, Stuttgart, Germany, Tel.
+49-711-25 35 92-40, Fax +49-711-25 35 92-55, email@example.com,