02/2019, Current R&D projects

Research Infrastructure Product Research – Functional Proteins for the Food and Chemical Industries

  • funding program: Förderung von wirtschaftlich genutzten Investitionen in wirtschaftsnahen anwendungsorientierten Forschungseinrichtungen im Land Sachsen-Anhalt (Investitionsbank Sachsen-Anhalt)
  • term: 01.01.2019 – 31.12.2020

Initial position

Proteins are biological macromolecules made up of amino acids. They are one of the main nutrients for humans and must be regularly added to the human body to renew body cells. A lack of protein can lead to illness and death.

The most important protein sources of human nutrition include products of animal (meat, fish, eggs, milk) and vegetable origin (wheat, potato, rice, soy, lupine, pea).

Increasing world population and growing demand in developing and emerging countries means that supplying high-quality, high-protein foods is increasingly becoming a global challenge. On the available agricultural land, the rising gaps in supply can not be closed by yield increases alone. This situation is exacerbated by overfishing of the oceans, climate change and water scarcity.

The development of new protein sources for human and animal nutrition are approaches to solve this problem.

In the Lead Market Working Group on Nutrition and Agriculture of the Regional Innovation Strategy of Saxony-Anhalt 2014-2020, the following alternative sources of protein with a special significance for the state of Saxony-Anhalt were defined:

  • vegetable proteins (including rape, fava bean)
  • microalgae proteins
  • insect proteins

PPM as a research institution is already active in this field of research and will continue to deal with these tasks.

Planned measures:

  • Conversion of existing office space to laboratories (structural measure)
  • Digitization of the laboratory documentation
  • Purchase of equipment, instruments, equipment, installations and equipment


In the future, by improving the equipment, the functional proteins will be better characterized, such as:

  • amino acid composition
  • Particle size distribution
  • Surface charge of proteins
  • Texture of protein products
  • Color of protein powder

Furthermore, new software (such as databases, statistic design of experiments and laboratory management systems) should increase the quality of the experimental work and reduce the effort of trial procedures.

Expected effects:

  • new innovations in more application areas
  • Transfer research results into the (regional) economy
  • Extension of the product and application spectrum of PPM
  • Generation of new publicly funded projects
  • Carrying out special experiments or analytical services (maximum 20% of the total capacity of each equipment)




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