Evaluation Technology of Metallic Compounds Recognition in Living Bodies

Request Number REQ6369182
Due Date April 2, 2018
Request for Proposal Details
RFP Title
Evaluation Technology of Metallic Compounds Recognition in Living Bodies
RFP Description

NineSigma, representing a major food manufacturer, seeks a potential development partner for an evaluation technology of recognition mechanisms of heme or other metallic compounds in the living body. The client ultimately aims to establish a technology to evaluate heme and other metallic compounds as taste substance through joint development with the potential partner. Proposals from organizations and experts are widely welcome, regardless of past experience in research related to taste.


As a food manufacturer, client is actively engaged in R&D on various tastes. They believe that heme, which is a physiologically essential molecule, may affect the unique taste of red meat, etc. Under this presumption, the client wishes to deepen the research on the mechanism of new flavor formation based on heme and other metallic compounds, which can lead to development of novel technology to control taste of foods. However, while various studies have been conducted regarding unpleasant taste caused by a reaction between metals and lipids and on the taste formation triggered by a reaction or catalysis of metals during cooking, the mechanism of taste recognition of metallic compounds and their associates has yet to be determined. In the meantime, the recognition mechanism of receptor in the living body has been widely studied in various fields, including physiology and pharmacology. Therefore, the client has issued this open request to accelerate development of an evaluation technology of taste recognition of heme and other metallic compounds, by collaborating with promising organizations or experts with advanced technology to evaluate molecular recognition of metallic compounds or other molecules in the living body.


Key Success Criteria

Requirements of the Respondent

  • Should have either of the following research experiences on molecular recognition in living bodies:
    • Research on receptors or other mechanism to recognize metallic compounds as ligands
    • Research on related topics that might be theoretically applied to metallic compounds.
  • Should have an evaluation technology for the mechanism of molecule recognition in living bodies

As the client will provide with evaluation technology of taste and the presence of receptors in the oral cavity, respondents are not required to have research experiences related to oral cavity and tastes.


Possible Approaches

Technology of Interest

The client seeks technology and expertise that might be applicable to the following metallic compounds. Especially, proposals based on the physiological and pharmacological expertise about molecule recognition are widely welcome as well as those based on structural biological expertise, such as interactions between ligands and receptors.

  • Target metallic compounds that serve as ligands
    • Organic metallic compounds/ complex
      • e.g. Heme
    • Metallic salt
    • Metallic ion and its associates
    • Intermolecular complex
  • Target metal elements
    • Fe, Zn, Cu Technologies

Anticipated Respondents

Anticipated respondents include, but are not limited to, those who conduct R&D on the following topics:

  • Exploration of receptors in general
  • Mechanism of recognition of heme and other metallic compounds in the living body
    • Receptors
    • Channels
    • Transporters
  • in vivo kinetics of metallic compounds, such as heme
  • Taste modification effect of metallic compounds, such as heme Research proposals based on findings or expertise in researches on other than the oral cavity will be highly welcomed.


Approaches not of interest

Technologies NOT of Interest

The following technologies are NOT of interest:

  • Research on unpleasant taste caused by reaction between metals and lipids
  • Research on the mechanism of taste formation, triggered by reaction or catalysis of metals during cooking, etc.
  • Molecular recognition not applicable to mechanisms in the living body


Preferred Collaboration types
  • Joint Development
Items to be submitted

Responses will use the Proposal Template which is available here and include the following items:

  • Overview of the proposal
  • Uniqueness of the research method
  • Achievements related to recognition of metallic compounds (if any)
    • Ligands
    • Receptors
    • Data
  • Past achievements (e.g. additional information supporting R&D capabilities, such as research papers and patents)
  • Organization overview


Anticipated Project Phases or Project Plan

Respondents should submit proposals using the attached Response Template.
The client will review submitted proposals and possibly ask clarifying questions before selecting the most suitable candidates for collaboration. The client will select the best candidate(s) through
evaluations. During the selection process, the client may execute non-disclosure agreements (NDA) with selected respondent(s), seek further information disclosure, and discuss specific development targets or potential opportunities. The client will execute necessary agreement(s) with the selected respondent(s) and move to the advanced development phase. Specifics of any collaboration will be determined through consultation with the concerned parties.


Area of Interest
Request Priority