Allozymes, a Singapore-based deep technology-enabled biotech company, has announced that it has raised $5 million in a seed funding round led by Temasek’s deep tech investment arm Xora Innovation. The round was also participated in by TI Platform Management, HAX, and Entrepreneur First.

Allozymes was founded in December 2019 by two Iranian scientists, Peyman Salehian (Chief Executive Officer) and Akbar Vahidi (Chief Technical Officer), who met at the National University of Singapore (NUS) while pursuing their PhDs. The company aims to revolutionize the enzyme development industry through “(1) an understanding of the enzymatic pathway for a product, (2) screening a large and targeted variants library in a short timeframe and optimizing the protein specifically that fits into customer requirements, (3) employing molecular biology and process engineering to produce that protein, (4) delivering the precise protein in the form of the pure enzyme for the target application.”

Dr. Salehian shared his thoughts on the costly and time-consuming industry: “The state of the art hasn’t changed in 20 years. When we talk with big pharma, they have whole departments for this, they have $2 million robots, and it still takes a year to get a new enzyme.”

Through its technology, the company claims that it can screen millions of different enzyme variants daily. In doing so, the company will be able to gather insight from the data gathered and boost their chances of creating a novel enzyme that will be fit-for-purpose for different commercial applications.

“If you have a big data set that shows ‘if you change this amino acid this will be the function,’ you don’t even need to engineer it, you can eliminate it [i.e. from consideration]. You can even design enzymes if you know enough,” Salehian said. Commercial enzymes can be used for industries such as pharma, agriculture and food, and personal care.

Dr. Salehian added: “Our biotechnology platform enables the sustainable and economical production of natural ingredients for a broad array of industrial applications, everything from sweeteners, to natural colors, to vitamins, personal care, and cosmetic ingredients, for a start.”

Allozymes plans to use its seed fund to establish its roots in Singapore and establish its manufacturing and business infrastructure in order to meet its projected demand in the APAC region.

“Whether for food, fashion, fuels, or electronics, Allozymes enables commercial access to custom enzymes at unprecedented speed, scale, and quality. Embedded in the fastest-growing sustainable products market in the world, Allozymes is well-positioned with a unique value proposition for ESG-minded partners in the region and beyond,” said Donna See, Chief Executive Officer of Xora Innovation.