Amyris, Inc. is a biotechnology company headquartered in Emeryville, California. Amyris' products include ingredients for cosmetics, flavors, and fragrances. Amyris owns three brands: Biossance and Pipette, for beauty and baby skincare, and Purecane, a sugar substitute. The company went public on NASDAQ on September 28, 2010.
In 2003 Amyris developed their first molecule, Artemisinin, in partnership with Institute for OneWorld Health, who received a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Amyris Biotechnologies and Sanofi assisted on certain parts of the project, using technology based from UC Berkeley, NRC Canada, and other sources.
Artemisinin is a compound naturally found in Artemisia annua, Chinese sweet wormwood, and is used in the treatment of malaria. Amyris developed artemisinin through their patented fermentation process to create a more efficient means to manufacturing the treatment.
Through the same technology that created the artemisinin molecule, a new yeast pathway led to the development of the cosmetic ingredient, squalane. Used by major cosmetic companies globally as a skin moisturizer, the ingredient was originally obtained from shark liver. Squalane is found in Biossance and Pipette brands.
Through fermentation Amyris developed Reb M, a steviol glycoside naturally found small quantities in the stevia plant Stevia rebaudiana and shown to have a taste profile similar to sugar. Reb M is found in Purecane Brand Sweetener.
Several new molecules have been developed using the original fermentation process including flavors, fragrances, CBD, CBG and the cosmetic ingredient bisabolol.
Amyris joined partnership with IDRI in July, 2020 for a planned COVID-19 RNA vaccine technology program. The program combines IDRI's expertise in combating infectious diseases with Amyris' fermentation platform technology, with the goal to create semi-synthetic squalene-based adjuvants at scale.
· Using Microbes to create the Next Generation of Fuels on CNN The Next List
· A Better Biofuel on MIT Technology Review
· Bets on Biotech on US News