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UCL School of Pharmacy researchers awarded £1.25m by EPSRC to predict and manufacture pharmaceutical crystals

Dr Simon Gaisford and Miss Asma Buanz (with collaborators Professors Sally Price and Derek Tocher, UCL Chemistry and Professor Alistair Florence and Dr Andrew Urquhart, Strathclyde) have been awarded £1.25m by EPSRC for their project ‘Computationally designed templates for exquisite control of polymorphic form’. During the project the team will identify new potential polymorphic forms using advanced computer simulation and will attempt to manufacture the predicted crystals using their comprehensive toolkit of crystal engineering techniques. Work at the UCL School of Pharmacy will focus on the use of ink-jet printing to grow crystal forms. Recent work, featured in the Royal Society of Chemistry’s March edition of Chemistry World, and published in CrystEngComm, showcased Simon and Asma’s preliminary results using ink-jet printing to prepare co-crystals and grow metastable forms by jetting solutions onto crystal templates.

The EPSRC funding will allow for development of a bespoke printer, tailored to produce crystal forms. Dr Gaisford said “I am delighted that we will be able to develop and exploit fully the tremendous potential of ink-jet printing to the field of crystal engineering and look forward to isolating new polymorphs of pharmaceuticals that may have enhanced physicochemical properties. I am also extremely pleased that we have established a successful collaboration with colleagues in both UCL and Strathclyde”.

Professor Kevin Taylor, Head, Department of Pharmaceutics, said “For several years Dr Gaisford has pioneered the pharmaceutical applications of ink-jet printing, for instance in the preparation of excipient-free inhalable particles and oral films. I am very pleased that the EPSRC have recognized Dr Gaisford’s expertise in this area and that of his collaborators, and the potential of this technology for producing drug crystals of defined polymorphic form. I await the results of the first studies with interest.”

Link for CrystEngComm:

http://pubs.rsc.org/en/content/articlelanding/2013/ce/c2ce26519b

Page last modified on 19 jun 13 16:31