Des Solutio is the spin-off created by Ana Rita Duarte, Associate Professor at the Chemistry Department at FCT NOVA and Principal Investigator of the des.solve research lab at LAQV, and Alexandre Paiva, FCT Investigator at LAQV-FCT NOVA.
It aims to develop safer and greener alternatives to the chemicals that are usually used in the production of beauty, pharmaceutical, personal care and other products. The research work behind this new spin-off is done at the des.solve and biocatalysis & bioenergy research labs and led to the development of new methods to use Natural Deep Eutectic Solvents (NADES), which can replace other toxic organic solvents such as ethanol that is currently used in a wide range of industries to extract natural ingredients from plants. NADES offer many benefits over those solvents, once they are entirely derived from natural compounds such as organic acids, amino acids and sugars, found in a wide range of plants. It has been already identified a vast range of NADES, so they can be matched to specific active ingredients to extract only what is needed. There is no need to recover an active ingredient from a NADES, unlike conventional solvents, some of which are too toxic for use on skin or in foods.