Avista Corp. (AVA:US), a U.S. energy holding company, provided backing to help Matrix Genetics LLC complete its spinoff from the biotechnology company Targeted Growth Inc.
Targeted Growth, which also created the biofuel companies AltAir Fuels LLC and Sustainable Oils Inc., is refocusing on its core agricultural business, and “the spinout of Matrix is part of that strategy,” Matrix spokesman John Williams said today by e-mail.
Matrix, based in Seattle, is developing renewable fuels and chemicals from blue-green algae, and Avista’s funding will also support research into new strains that will be easier to cultivate and boost output, according to a statement today that didn’t say how much Avista invested.
Blue-green algae, or cyanobacteria, are “the most abundant, diverse and robust micro-algae on Earth,” according to the statement. Matrix is modifying its genes to create proprietary strains that yield larger quantities of oil or have other optimal traits for fuels or chemical production.
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