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Business

Ajinomoto sues over tryptophan patents

by Marc S. Reisch
May 23, 2016 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 94, ISSUE 21

The Japanese amino acid producer Ajinomoto has sued South Korean competitor CJ CheilJedang for infringing patents covering the manufacture of animal-feed-grade l-tryptophan. At issue is use of genetically enhanced Escherichia coli to improve the yield of the essential amino acid. In suits filed in U.S. federal court and Germany, Ajinomoto seeks unspecified monetary damages and a halt to CJ’s sale of the product. Ajinomoto recently said it would build a feed-grade tryptophan plant in Eddyville, Iowa, its first in the U.S.

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