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Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher announces $1 million grant to Alltech

[Lexington, Kentucky] - Showing a commitment to "advanced agriculture," specifically in the field of nutrigenomics, Kentucky Governor Ernie Fletcher and Economic Development Cabinet Secretary Gene Strong announced today the award of a $1 million grant to Alltech to assist in building its Center for Animal Nutrigenomics and Applied Animal Nutrition.?

"Kentucky is proud to work in partnership with Alltech to build this world-class Center for Animal Nutrigenomics and Applied Animal Nutrition at the company's headquarters here in Nicholasville," said Governor Fletcher. "The project, a part of Alltech's ongoing efforts to expand its research and product development activities, will create many new high-tech jobs in Kentucky."

Alltech, a global animal health company based in Kentucky, will build the center at its world headquarters on the Nicholasville campus as part of its existing 10,000 square foot research facility.? The grant is expected to create 40 new jobs in research and development over the next five years.

"The field of nutrigenomics, or the effect of diet on health, is one of the most exciting in science today," explained Dr. Karl Dawson, Alltech's director for worldwide research.? "Feeding the gene is the way forward.? It will keep agriculture and livestock production at the forefront of scientific innovation."

The grant, designed to advance the development of Kentucky's biotechnology sector, was approved by the Kentucky Economic Development Finance Authority (KEDFA) and will be awarded through the Cabinet for Economic Development's Department of Commercialization and Innovation.

"The state of Kentucky and Alltech have formed a strong alliance over the years to create jobs for Kentuckians and to produce products for use by farmers and animal producers around the globe," said Secretary Strong.? "Kentucky is pleased to partner with Alltech on an initiative that will give a significant boost to Kentucky's biotechnology industry."

"This research, though done in Kentucky, will benefit the animal feed industry in all 85 countries in which Alltech has a presence," said Alltech President and Founder Dr. Pearse Lyons.? "With nutrigenomics, we have already been able to put in place six provisional patents which should be converted into complete patents within the next two months."

Alltech's Center for Animal Nutrigenomics and Applied Animal Nutrition is expected to be the first of its kind in the world.? Dr. Karl Dawson said that Alltech is now in a position to study the hidden components of nutritional processes; not by simply looking at long-term animal performance, and not by carrying out numerous trials, but instead by looking at short-term changes in short-term studies; not by looking at five or six production parameters, but by looking at thousands of parameters at one time.? He pointed out how the benefits of increased milk production and improved fertility can be explained using nutrigenomics approaches.? Alltech will be able to expand their understanding of nutritional responses at the most basic gene level. ?

This has occurred truly by a three-way marriage between traditional nutrition, computer technology, and molecular biology.? In the future, understanding of nutritional manipulations will no longer be 'hit or miss.'? According to Dr. Dawson, nutrigenomics will provide exacting diagnostic tools that will rapidly allow scientists to define the optimal nutritional status of individual and groups of animals, and will more accurately allow animals to reach their genetic potential in the most economic way and with less waste.?

"Delivering on the Promise of Nutrigenomics" is the theme of Alltech's 22nd International Feed Industry Symposium.? The meeting is expected to draw 1,500 scientific minds from more than 60 countries around the world to Lexington, Kentucky, on April 23-26th.

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