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Internal News - 01 May 2007

Innovative University technology wins award

Novel particle engineering technology developed at the University of Bath and made commercially available by Prosonix Ltd has won the Royal Society of Chemistry’s 2006 Team Innovation Award.

The Royal Society of Chemistry is Europe’s largest professional organisation for advancing the chemical sciences, and one of the world’s oldest and most prestigious scientific institutions.

The technology, Solution, Atomisation and Crystallization by Sonication (SAXTM), was developed by Dr Robert Price from the Department of Pharmacy & Pharmacology, and offers the potential for significant improvements in methods of producing the particles that form the key ingredients of some medicines.

The award follows a successful two year collaboration and co-operation period which resulted in Oxford-based Prosonix licensing the SAX technology from the University in an exclusive agreement. Prosonix is now leading the commercialisation of the technology into the global pharmaceutical industry and has already generated significant interest from several leading pharmaceutical companies.

Producing crystalline particles from solution is a key concern of the pharmaceutical industry. However, existing methods of particle production have not provided sufficient control of features such as the size and surface characteristics of particles, which in turn affect important factors such as stability and effectiveness of drug upon delivery into the body.

The new technology allows particles to be produced directly from solution in a single step, while enabling greater control of the size and surface features of the particles produced.

Dr Robert Price said: “I am delighted to have achieved the recognition by the Royal Society of Chemistry, which serves to underpin the reputation of the University of Bath as a key internationally recognized research centre in Applied Pharmaceutical Sciences.

“The potential for SAXTM to address clear and pressing unmet needs in the inhaled medicines is simply breathtaking. By working with Prosonix I am confident that we will be able to transform inhaled drug delivery, by significantly improving the performance of current medicines, and enabling the cost effective commercial production of a range of novel therapies.”

Prosonix CEO, David Hipkiss added: “We are absolutely delighted to have won this year’s prestigious RSC Team Innovation Award and in particular to have been independently recognised by The Royal Society of Chemistry and their Industry and Technology Forum Executive.

“This is a major milestone achievement for the Prosonix business, demonstrating beyond doubt the significance and world beating potential of SAXTM Technology to the Pharmaceutical Industry.

“We look forward to building on our current two year relationship with the University into one of significant and long term value and mutual benefit.”