Novobiome project consortium

Granted with Eureka Eurostars funding (E!11342)

We are very proud to inform you that Winclove and its strategic partners have been granted a € 2 million funding through the Eurostars program for the isolation of new probiotic strains derived from the human gut.

Next generation probiotic strains

Scientist acknowledge that specific commensals could offer a potential treatment strategy in management of (chronic) indications, varying from autoimmune and allergy to inflammatory and neurological diseases, that have increased in recent decades. An example of an intestinal bacteria associated with beneficial health effects is the anaerobic bacteria Faecalibacterium prausnitzii. This is one of the most abundant and important commensal bacteria in the human gut and a very good producer of butyrate, a short-chain fatty acid often linked to gut health. Decreased populations of F. prausnitzii have been associated with inflammatory bowel diseases and colorectal cancer1. Another good potential probiotic candidate residing in the human intestinal tract is Akkermansia muciniphilla. This anaerobic bacteria supports the proper functioning of the intestinal barrier and has been associated with the development of diabetes, autism, obesity, metabolic disorders and IBD2.


Most gut derived species are hard to grow under standard culture conditions since they are often strictly anaerobic (they can’t withstand oxygen) and have complex nutritional requirements. Winclove is in the unique position to have in-house experts with in-depth knowledge on these species and the anaerobic fermentation processes these bacteria require. Together with our consortium partners in the Novobiome project; ProDigest, VivaCell Biotechnology, Wageningen University and Research Centre, and University Medical Centre Groningen, we will address the technical challenges for cultivation, characterization, delivery, formulation and production of these anaerobic bacteria. The ultimate goal is to bring probiotic formulations with newly human-derived probiotic bacteria for the management of chronic diseases to the market.

Head of Winclove’s innovation Department Marco van Es: This grant will speed up the development of probiotic formulations with next-generation probiotic strains (NGP). We believe that will play an important role in the management of many chronic diseases.

Review paper – Next generation probiotics for butyrate production in the gut.

Researchers from Winclove, in collaboration with Novobiome partners, have written a review about next generation probiotics which have been published recently [link]3


  1. Ferreira-Halder et al . Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol. 2017;31(6):643-648.
  2. Ottman et al. Action and function of Akkermansia muciniphila in microbiome ecology, health and disease. Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol. 2017 Dec;31(6):637-642.
  3. Gómez del Pulgar EM, Tsompanidou E, Harmsen HJM. Next Generation Probiotics for Butyrate Production in the Gut. EC Nutrition 2019; 14.12:01-09.

Eurostars supports international innovative projects led by research and development- performing small- and medium-sized enterprises. With its bottom-up approach, Eurostars supports the development of rapidly marketable innovative products, processes and services that help improve the daily lives of people around the world.

The Novobiome project ranked 8 out of 325 applicants that applied for a Eurostars grant. We are very proud and pleased to see that the relevance and potential of this project is also recognized by independent experts.