The initiative "Lycopene extraction from cochinchin gourd fruit" of scientists from the Institute of Chemistry won first prize in the contest "Science Initiative 2022"

On May 17, the Ministry of Science and Technology cooperated with VnExpress newspaper to organize the Young Scientist Summit 2022 and award the 2022 Science Initiative Contest.

The 2022 Science Initiative Contest was launched in February 2022 to search for innovative research products and ideas for life. This is a competition for professional and non- professional researchers under 40 years old nationwide, targeting 5 fields, including: Biomedical - biochemistry, education, agriculture, environment and new materials.

Being held for the first time, the contest attracted the attention of many leading scientists in Vietnam, including young researchers from domestic and foreign institutes and universities, with more than 100 participation profiles. After the preliminary round, the Judges selected 29 projects to the final round.

Deputy Minister of Science and Technology Bui The Duy, representative of the Organizing Committee, the Judges and authors of 7 initiatives - Photo: VGP/HG

The first prize of the contest (worth 50 million VND) was awarded to the initiative "Lycopene extraction from cochinchin gourd fruit" by the group of scientists G5 - the researcher group to develop new materials under the Institute of Chemistry, the Vietnam Academy of Science and Technology. This is the work of successfully extracting 98% pure lycopene and water-soluble nano lycopene.

Lycopene and lycopene nanosystem are valuable medicinal sources with great potential for application in the pharmaceutical, cosmetic and food technology industries. Realizing that the lycopene content in cochinchin gourd fruit is 70-100 times higher than that of tomatoes, after 3 years of research, the G5 team of scientists has successfully isolated it.

With a simple technological process, this solution can help cosmetic and food companies to import high purity raw materials at reasonable prices. According to the research team's calculation, 1 kg of extracted lycopene costs about 50-60 million VND, equivalent to one third of the cost of imported products (about 150 million VND). The research was patented by the Intellectual Property Office of Vietnam in January 2021.

In addition, the Organizing Committee also awarded 01 special prize, 2 third prizes and 3 consolation prizes for other solutions. According to the Organizing Committee, the honored initiatives all have practical value in solving problems from life, have application potential, contribute to increasing labor productivity, and bring about economic efficiency.

Translated by Phuong Huyen
Link to Vietnamese version

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