Project: Green indoor growth factory for production of high value compounds through GMO plants.

The CO P Lumigreen AS, Norway, has since 1999 executed extensive research in development of novel production and growth systems for plants, based on the use of narrow bandwidth light. Since 2004 the R&D has focused on the use of LED as the light source in cooperation with Phillips Lumileds Ltd. Lumigreen has succeeded in development of both a computer controlled photosynthesis bioreactor for production of micro algae,(in use by company Promar AQUA AS), as well as its CO product the: Lumigreen system for growth of high quality sport grass. _x000D__x000D_The aim of this project is to further develope the Lumigreen system for optimized and secure growth of plants used in molecular farming of PMP's (Plant-made-pharmaceutical.) Using narrow bandwidth LED's Lumigreen is able to designs tailored light spectrum combinations ranging from UVA light through the whole visible light spectrum to far red and infrared light. This technology allows for advanced photosynthetic control of plants aiming to speed up the growth process as well as increasing yield, or production of valuable substances. Lumigreen plan to target the light absorption spectrums of Chlorophyll A and B and especially the photoreceptive pigments Cryptochrome and Phytochrome which directly control the processes determining the processes of germination, stretch growth and especially seedling. The planned outcome will be a tailored LED based indoor growth system technology, as well as specific growth protocols for barley and novel knowledge of light spectrum based plant control._x000D__x000D_Plant-made pharmaceuticals (PMPs) are a class of GM crop intended for use as therapeutic drugs for humans or livestock, or as materials for research and industry (e.g., cell culture media). PMP plants are used as factories to produce the PMP product, and the product is extracted from the plant._x000D_PMP has numerous advantages compared to the conventional bacteria or mammalian cells systems, among these that plants do not have an immune system and, therefore, provide a safe cellular environment for the production of recombinant proteins of the immune system and serum in man. Last but not least PMP offers greatly reduced investment and production costs that may lower the enormous costs of biopharmaceuticals._x000D_It is therefore of great interest to develop efficient as well as sustainable production equipment and processes for this emerging industry. A successful LUMIGEN project is likely to have a positive impact on the competitiveness of European bioindustry. _x000D__x000D_The participant P ORF Genetics is a leading company in the field of molecular farming. ORF has developed a highly applicable technology platform for the production of recombinant proteins in plants, the so called OrfeusTM production system, for economical production of high-value recombinant proteins of superior quality (biorisk-free products). ORF Genetics was the first company in the world to market plant-made recombinant proteins. _x000D__x000D_ORF Genetics has since 2001 established a PMP barley-based factory in Iceland using hydroponic cultivation in a greenhouse fitted with HPS lamps in order to obtain multiple harvests over the whole year, compared to field grown barley. The energy for the operation is derived from a renewable green energy sources (geo-thermal energy). This approach has several intrinsic advantages in terms of production and safety. Optimizing light conditions for molecular farming may be compared to increasing the octane level in fossil fuel for vehicles, as light is the primary energy source for plants. Improved quality of light may affect multiple variables important for molecular farming; plant generation time, harvest yield, protein content, to name a few. In this project two leading companies within their field join forces with the goal to optimize light, energy, sustainability, control and quality of European molecular farming. State-of-the-art low energy LEDs will be used to replace HPS lights while studying the effects of wavelengths on barley physiology, recombinant protein content and quality, and gradually move to a modular LED driven molecular farming. _x000D__x000D_The two companies are now Ps in order to execute the following project:_x000D_Through the use of parallel setups of trials and controls initiate and develop a new LED based technology for improved production with ORF's Orfeus TM PMP production system using barley._x000D__x000D_Phase 1 - Development into existing ORF greenhouse as a LED light system in addition to natural lights_x000D_Phase 2 - Developed as a indoor complete environmental growth system, and_x000D_Phase 3 - Developed and integrated into a modular growth factory system._x000D_

Acronym LUMIGEN (Reference Number: 5720)
Duration 10/08/2010 - 10/06/2013
Project Topic The project is focusing on development of safe, efficient and energy efficient photosynthetic production equipment for Plant-made pharmaceuticals (PMPs). In the cooperation the Norwegian technology company Lumigreen AS join forces with the Icelandic biotech company ORF Genetics.
Project Results
(after finalisation)
The CO result of the project is a prototype of a high-tech, state-of-the-art LED based cultivation system optimized for barley growing. The system is flexible and can be adapted for various smaller plants with comparatively short life cycles. Besides the new powerful LEDs, this system includes variable height adjustment of LED light canopy, new cooling designs, air circulation system (shoot and root environment) and a new software system, developed from clean-sheet. The LED system can therefore be controlled by this computer based software system with a web log-on interface so that (1) planning of growth cycles, (2) surveillance of the growth process (light quality, growth speed, temperature and moisture) and (3) logging of history and growth data can be executed and stored on the online web server. This setup secures optimum recording of each growth cycle, as well as easy sharing and access to data between Ps. _x000D_The LED system was tested at the University of Guelph in Canada using their Controlled Environment Systems Research Facility (CESRF) hypobaric plant growth chambers. The chambers were fully automated with controlled temperature, humidity, air flow, CO2 influx and measurement of photosynthesis (changes in CO2 concentration). Barley response to narrow band LED irradiation was tested using four LEDs, two red (Deep Red @660nm and Red @638nm) and two blue (Royal Blue @440nm and Blue @472nm). Aim of the studies was to test these LEDs on barley with respect to (I) optimal wavelength, (II) intensity and (III) red:blue ratio. The CO results from these experiments are described below._x000D__x000D_Phase I: Optimal wavelength for barley growth_x000D_When the barley was irradiated with the same photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) intensity both red wavelengths produced a similar photosynthetic response. The response of blue LEDs showed a significant decrease in photosynthesis when compared to red, with the blue 472 nm wavelength performing somewhat worse than the 440 nm. For the purpose of barley photosynthesis, the choices from these results are 440 nm for blue and 660 nm for red._x000D_Phase II: Optimal intensity for barley growth_x000D_When all LEDs were combined and run at 100% power, a saturation point was achieved in the 1000-1200 µmol m-2 s-1 range. Saturation implies that the addition of more light will not result in increased photosynthesis, and in the case of economical plant growth, exceeding saturation levels is wasted energy. For this single replicate of barley, the most economical PAR level that balances growth with light energy output was between 400 and 500 µmol m-2 s-1. _x000D_Phase III: Optimal red:blue ratio for barley growth_x000D_Variable ratios of red:blue were used in this study where it was shown that the addition of increasing amounts of blue light to red reduced the relative rate of carbon assimilation, however there was little significance until the ratio exceeded 50:50 red:blue. Based on this data the 50:50 ratio was used in subsequent experiments._x000D__x000D_The findings described above were used when designing the first experimental setup at ORF Genetics greenhouse (Green Factory). The aim was to confirm the effects of the tailored setup on barley growth, in particular a reduction in stretch growth and increase in stem strength (rigidness), both important factors in reducing the “falling-down” frequency of barley. Initial results demonstrated approx. 25% less height and shortened time to development of the first tillers compared to the HPS light control group. Due to several reasons no full-cycle cultivation periods have been accomplished so far and therefore the final assessment of the effect of the LED setup on the amount and quality of the barley seed produced target protein has not been made. However, the experiments will continue throughout 2014 with adjustments of cooling, nutrient supplement and wavelength.
Network Eurostars
Call Eurostars Cut-Off 4

Project partner

Number Name Role Country
2 ORF Genetics Partner Iceland
2 Lumigreen as Coordinator Norway