The finalists for the Innovate UK KTP Awards 2023 have been announced and include two University of Bath nominated finalists.
The KTP with Qualasept enabled the company to develop, validate and implement novel methods for the characterisation of therapeutic antibody-drug conjugates. This allowed Qualasept to generate a series of new pharmaceutical products of next generation cancer therapies with extended shelf-lives.
The application of extended shelf-lives allows the NHS to procure these highly expensive drugs in advance, almost as ‘stock items’, significantly reducing wastage and freeing up valuable time of healthcare professionals who no longer need to prepare them. There have also been improvements to patient experience by reducing waiting times and to drug safety which is is now better controlled and regulated.
The expertise embedded within Qualasept has led the company to become a recognised lead advisor on biopharmaceutical stability, helping to shape NHS guidelines on this important class of pharmaceuticals. Qualasept has expanded their operations and are now a major employer within the Wiltshire area.
The KTP between University of Bath and Qualasept (trading as Bath ASU) was awarded ‘Outstanding’ by Innovate UK on completion and helped the company secure the Queen’s Award for Enterprise and Innovation.
Dr Andy Watts, academic lead from the University of Bath says:
The outcomes from this KTP have exceeded all expectations and it is extremely rewarding to now be recognised at a national level as a finalist for the national KTP awards. Since the award of this KTP the partnership between Qualasept and the University of Bath has gone from strength to strength, resulting in multiple follow-on collaborations, culminating in the recent award of an EPSRC Prosperity Partnership grant with a total project value of £9.4 million.
The KTP continues to deliver a lasting legacy of impact. Qualasept now has the widest range of biological products with extended shelf lives in the sector. They have increased revenues which are now running at £200 million per annum with 300 full-time employees. They are recognised as a lead advisor on biopharmaceuticals, informing NHS regional quality controllers who set NHS standards and shape the regulatory landscape.
The University of Bath's other finalist nomination is for the KTP Associate Harley Beatie, for the Future Leader Award. Through her role as KTP Associate, Harley helped deliver the University's KTP with Quick Release to improve their Product Data Management (PDM) efficiency.
Quick Release is a global Engineering Data Management consultancy delivering best practice solutions for PDM and business process. Harley delivered an industry leading methodology to grow their internal expertise and IP. This resulted in a 25% resource saving on diagnostic projects, preventing an eight-week client programme delay, and overseas delivery. Harley says:
I’m delighted to be shortlisted for the Future Leaders award. The KTP provided a great start to my career, allowing me to develop quickly and make the most of some amazing opportunities. Thank you to the KTP team at Bath and those at QR who supported the nomination.
The Business Partnerships and Knowledge Exchange team, in Research and Innovation Services (RIS) at the University of Bath, develops and supports Innovate UK funded KTPs throughout their lifecycle. Dr Steven Boakes, Head of Business Partnerships and Knowledge Exchange, says:
I am delighted by these nominations which recognise outstanding partnerships with the University of Bath and have delivered outcomes and impacts which continue to this day. This is a true testament to the benefits of KTPs and the application of the University's research expertise and knowledge exchange.
The ceremony for the Innovate UK KTP Awards 2023 will take place on 18 October.