Formulation and Nutrition Science, Technology Centre

Formulation and Nutrition Science, Technology Centre (FANS TC) has been working closely with companies from biomedical, pharmaceutical, food and flavour industry to develop formulations with functional and bioactive compounds. The technology centre aims to develop new technologies and processes that are simple and can be easily adopted by the industry.

Food and Formulation Science TC

Our Research Focus

Pharmaceutical and Functional Food Formulations through Sustainable Procedures

Our researchers in are involved in pharmaceutical projects involving tableting granulation, extrusion and spheronisation, spray drying, tablet afilm coating and characterisation of microemulsions, these are carried out at our joint RP-BASF lab, which houses a wide range of specialised equipment including a 16-station tablet press, zetasizer Nano, fluid bed dryer and microfluidics.

At the food lab we are involved in formulating healthier recipes by incorporating a novel mix of functional ingredients, scoring high on the health-taste index. The prototypes developed are subjected to analysis for texture, nutritional content, shelf-life and preliminary sensory evaluation for product development. A full-fledged chocolate making facility housed in the RP-Wilmar Innovation Centre allows development of novel formulations with chocolates. Facilities like, blast freezer, stability analyser, industry grade ovens, food extruder and a UHT line with clean fill have allowed a range of products to be developed in collaboration with our industry partners.

Utilization of plant proteins for feed development

Our focus is on maximizing the potential of raw materials to develop nutritious and economical feed. ‘Aquaria’ our aquaculture research lab, enables feed developed in the formulation lab to be subjected to small scale feeding trials to assess palatability of feed.

Molecular diagnostics, bioprinting and bioassays

We conduct studies with cell-based assays for screening efficacy of bioactive compounds, at laboratories with advanced infrastructure for growth and maintenance of mammalian cell lines and capable of carrying out studies for cytotoxic, regenerative or proliferative potentials using fluorescence activated cell sorter (FACS), bioprinting and differentiation of embryonic stem cells and other assays in vitro.

For our patented single step PCR based method for detection of infections from dengue, chikungunya and zika virus we are looking for industry partner for commercialization.

FANS dengue, chikungunya and zika virus

Health Technology

The development of more home and self-care devices can assist in early intervention and monitor treatment or recovery status.  As the healthcare industry moves towards point of care services, we are looking into viable solutions to enhance health care, but at a lower cost.  One area of interest is the detection of renal diseases using uroflow.

Combating Diabetes

We aim to work closely with food manufactures, restaurants and hospitals to develop food products that can help keep the sugar levels in check. We are currently working on project for developing recipes for low GI food, making effective use of low calorie sweeteners and coming up with functional food to prevent metabolic syndrome.

An effective use of compounds that can improve insulin sensitivity is helpful in combating diabetes. Currently our research team is working on in vitro screening method for compounds with positive insulin-response. These can be a part of the diet or form API for new drug development.

Our Projects

The technology centre has completed several innovative projects involving novelty ideas in formulations, processes and overall product development. These have translated into innovative products and solutions, examples of such products include:

Granola bar

Soy-based Granola with Rice Crispies

This product, developed for Mr Bean outlets, provides consumers a snack option with the goodness of oats, soy and nuts. This product was developed with careful selection of ingredients to package together nutrient-rich snack bar. The use of soy pulp has added extra protein and fibre to the recipe.

Blueberry cupcakes

Gluten-free Blueberry Cupcakes

This product makes use of soy pulp generated after the extraction of soymilk. It was incorporated to add texture to this gluten-free recipe and to provide the needed extra fibre, protein and calcium. It is beneficial not only to consumers following a gluten-free diet, but for those seeking snack options with fewer calories and less sugar and fat. The recipe is currently being tested for commercial production.

IMG_0048

Photoactive Larvicide

The incidence of mosquito borne diseases (dengue, malaria, chikungunya and Zika fever etc.) has seen a significant increase globally. Researchers have synthesised a photoactive compound of natural origin, have tested is efficacy in collaboration with National Environment Agency (NEA), are now working on developing a novel photoactive larvicide formulation to be available for commercialization soon.



breast cancer markers

Identification of novel breast cancer markers

Statistics reveal breast cancer as second leading cause of mortality in women. Current detection methods are invasive and lack sensitivity, leading to delayed detection and poor prognosis. A team of researchers is working for a better prognostic and therapeutic marker that can be assessed using a non-invasive approach.



 

Herbal Tea in Powdered Form

Healthy eating is becoming a part of life for many and there is a trend for a demand for products with natural ingredients and traditional flavours. Treasuring the traditional benefits of herbal teas in a contemporary instant powdered mix is the idea behind the development of the formulation of this premium herb drink.

Six formulations developed by RP are currently being developed by our industry partner, Polimedical Pte Ltd into powder to enhance their shelf life, making an instant drink packed with the goodness of natural herbs.


Bento Meal Sets for Vending Machines

This project, done in collaboration with QQ rice, aimed to optimise the process that will allow the meal sets to be placed in a vending machine, ready to eat on dispensing, yet another technology-driven project that allows manufacturers to expand business. We are interested in such projects as through such collaborations we ensure healthier meals are within reach for all.

Polar sugar roll_HR

Past collaborations

Republic Polytechnic has launched products onto the market with industry partners to provide healthy food options such as gluten-free cakes and wholegrain cake rolls with Polar Puffs and Cakes, herbal drinks with Eu Yang Sang and a range of low-calorie, low-GI buns in local flavours with Par International.