CMAC News June 2014


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Welcome to the fourth edition of CMAC News. This has been an exciting quarter for the Centre ranging from the announcement of a new £22.7m Supply Chain project to hosting of two prestigious events: The International Symposium on Continuous Manufacturing of Pharmaceuticals and an EPSRC-NSF Workshop to publication of research articles.  We are also delighted to welcome many new staff to the Centre.  I hope you enjoy reading our news. For future editions any feedback, articles or notes of esteem will be warmly welcomed.

Andrea (Centre Manager) 

Annual review  

International Symposium on Continuous Manufacturing of Pharmaceuticals

On 20th – 21st May 2014, CMAC co-hosted and organised the first International Symposium on Continuous Manufacturing of Pharmaceuticals in Boston. This prestigious event, requested by Janet Woodcock Head of CDER at the FDA, engaged discussions on  making continuous pharmaceutical manufacturing a reality! This event was attended by 250 world leaders in continuous processing, with pharmaceutical end users, suppliers, regulators and academics who discussed accelerating the adoption of continuous manufacturing for both small molecules and biological products. The key output from the Symposium was eight white papers of which Alastair Florence, Craig Johnston, Jag Srai, Paul Sharratt and Clive Badman contributed to four papers as lead or co-author. The event was also attended by four Centre researchers who presented posers of their work to the esteemed audience. More information, and the white papers which are available for comment can be found here. Read more >>


Successful New Project - Reconfiguring Medicine and End-to-End Supply Chain (REMEDIES)

The £23 million project aimed at revolutionising pharmaceutical supply with patient focus.

The four-year project will benefit from research expertise from the EPSRC Centre for Innovative Manufacturing in Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallisation (CMAC) as well as a host of other partners. The investment was approved in the latest round of the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative announced by Business Secretary Vince Cable.

The aim of the Advanced Pharmaceutical Supply Chain Consortium, led by GSK and comprising 22 partners, is to modernise the manufacturing supply chain for pharmaceuticals, paving the way for increasingly personalised production, which is closer to patients and in response to need.


CMAC Industry Director Craig Johnston said: “This project fully aligns with CMAC’s vision of accelerating the introduction of continuous manufacturing. In addition to the involvement of GSK and AstraZeneca, a key element will be to help develop and demonstrate novel technologies in an industrial environment from our strong SMEs and academic research base.”

CMAC Director Professor Alastair Florence said: “This award, involving Cambridge and Strathclyde universities, builds on our National Centre collaborative consortium and will enable us to work with partners to exploit our leading technology, from reaction through to formulated pharmaceutical products". Roger Connor, President, Global Manufacturing and Supply, GSK, who led the bid on behalf of the sector, said: “This bid, which will focus on areas such as continuous manufacturing and new technology platforms, creates and safeguards jobs across the partnership and helps keep the UK at the forefront of life sciences.”

The £23 million project was among nine winners from round four of the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative, which in total received £129 million of support – including £53 million of government funding and more than £75 million of private money. Further detail will be provided in the next newsletter Read more >>

 Annual review  

Manufacturing the Future Conference 2014 - Register and submit your abstract now!

CMAC are proud hosts of the 3rd Annual Manufacturing the Future Conference, 23rd – 24th September 2014, at the Glasgow Science Centre. This is the premier national manufacturing research conference which focuses on the leading edge of science and engineering for manufacturing. Spaces are filling up quick for registration, with a delegate fee of only £150. Submit your abstract now, with the upcoming deadline of Tuesday 17th June. We hope to see you all at the Conference in September! Read more >>


EPSRC/NSF Workshop, 9th – 11th April, Puerto Rico

The Centre, at the request of the research council, recently arranged a  two day workshop on advanced pharmaceutical manufacturing with US / UK academics, industry, FDA and public bodies attending.  This event identified opportunities for international research collaboration to advance continuous manufacturing of pharmaceuticals. The sessions provided an opportunity for leading research groups and relevant industries from the US and UK to identify areas of mutual interest where new, sustained joint activity can lead to advances in the manufacture of medicines. Further follow up activity is planned to accelerate this intiative.


Mettler Toledo meet with Centre and Industry directors


Industrial Mentor Groups

The mentor groups have been busy in the last quarter with three face-to-face meetings being held involving a total of five companies, 11 industrial mentors, 12 students presentations and over 20 additional students attending from the local university who were interested in the projects. The “Controlling Nucleation and Growth” group met at Heriot-Watt University with presenters from Heriot-Watt and Edinburgh – the discussions were so fruitful and detailed that we didn’t get round to the lab tour and kept going through lunch as well. The meeting has since led to one of the Heriot-Watt students arranging to visit FujiFilm to make use of specialist analytical equipment.

The “Modelling and Control Group” met at Loughborough University on the same day as the CMAC Technical Committee with over 20 people attending the student’s presentations. This included a lab tour seeing the new meso-OBC set-up and a demonstration of the CryPRINS software

The primary to secondary (formulation) group met at AstraZeneca Macclesfield as part of a themed visit on Drug Product.

If anyone is interested in becoming an industrial mentor, please contact your representative on the Technical Committee or Ian Houson / Craig Johnston


RPIF Update

CMAC have commenced the procurement process for the new equipment under the RPIF award, this new suite of platform technology will assist in the growth and acceleration of research projects across the Centre. The invitation to tender for the design, manufacture, installation & commissioning of non-GMP continuous process skids for pharmaceutical research and development is now live, technology companies interested in submitting a response to this tender can find details here. We would like to warmly welcome two new recruits to the RPIF project, Dr Roy McBurney and Scott McPhee joined CMAC in May with the roles of Senior Technician and Lab Manager respectively.



Industry Update – PDRA Placement at AstraZeneca

As part of broader engagement CMAC have been involved with AstraZeneca on a knowledge and technology exchange project part funded through the EPSRC Impact Accelerator Account (IAA). Post-doctoral researcher Dr Anna Jawor-Baczynska spent an eight week placement at AstraZeneca, Macclesfield, UK. Anna applied the techniques that have been developed within Prof Sefcik’s Group for the control of continuous crystallisations on several live AstraZeneca projects. The visit was a huge success, increasing the knowledge and enthusiasm for continuous crystallisation at AstraZeneca as well as giving Anna a real flavour of working in industry and the industrial context for future research questions.


ICT-CMAC - Automated fouling detection using imaging

Christos Tachtatzis (ICT CMAC Work Package 3) and Rachel Sheridan (Centre PhD student) have been working on an inexpensive automated fouling detection system using statistical analysis of pixel intensities from images taken with a low-cost, non-invasive camera. Both the onset of fouling and induction time for crystallisation can be detected from the same set of images. The measurement and analysis system was applied to a moving fluid oscillatory baffled crystalliser, and Christos and Rachel were able to demonstrate both early warning of fouling and induction time monitoring.



Interested in joining the CMAC team? We are currently recruiting for the following posts:

  • Up to 20 PhD studentships for the DTC in Continuous Manufacturing and Crystallisation Read more>>

  • 20 fully funded studentships for Msc in Advanced Pharmaceutical Manufacturing, University of Strathclyde Read more>>

  • PDRA in continuous crystallisation based at Loughborough University.

  • PDRA in primary to secondary processing based at the University of Strathclyde, details will be available soon on the CMAC Vacancies page.

A number of other opportunities will be available shortly, keep an eye on the CMAC Vacancies for details!


New Positions

Welcome to the CMAC team; three new recruits who have joined us over the last quarter.

  • Scott McPhee joined as the new Lab Manager under the £11.4M RPIF project.

  • Dr Roy McBurney, joined in the role of Senior Technician under the £11.4M RPIF project.

  • Dr Martin Ward joined The University of Edinburgh as a PDRA on the Manufacturing with Light project.


Researcher achievements

  • Researcher Ulrich Schacht commenced his career as a Technology & Application Consultant with Mettler Toledo in April following the completion of his PhD.

  • Researcher Craig Callahan has commenced a position at Solid Form Solutions following the completion of his PhD.

  • Dr Ali Saleemi secured a position of Senior Scientist at GSK, Stevenage, UK.

  • Dr Rajni Miglani Bhardwaj was awarded RSC best poster prize at BCA Spring Meeting, 7th-10th April, Loughborough.

  • Paul Coster was awarded best oral presentation prize at 17th Seminar of New Trends in Research of Energetic Materials (NTREM 2014) in Pardubice, Czech Republic.

  • Dr Thomas McGlone was invited to present his work at the APS – The Science of Medicines Conference, 8th – 10th September, Hertfordshire.


CMAC Publications

  • Zhao, L.; Raval, V.; Briggs, N. E. B.; Bhardwaj, R. M.; McGlone, T.; Oswald, I. D. H.; Florence, A. J.: From discovery to scale-up: α-lipoic acid : nicotinamide co-crystals in a continuous oscillatory baffled crystalliser, CrystEngComm, 2014, Selected for front cover.

  • Wittering, K., King, J., Thomas, L.H., Wilson, C.C.: From evaporative to cooling crystallisation: An initial co-crystallisation study of cytosine and its fluorinated derivative with 4-chloro-3,5-dinitrobenzoic acid, Crystals, 2014 accepted for publication (invited issue; S Cooper, Durham, guest editor).

  • Thomas, L. H.; Klapwijk, A. R.; Wales, C.; Wilson, C. C.: Intermolecular Hydrogen Transfer and Solubility Tuning in Multi-component Molecular Crystals of the API Piroxicam, CrystEngComm, 2014.

   CrystEngComm Front Cover
  • Coster, P.L.;    Henderson, C.A.; Hunter S.; Marshall, W.G.; Kleppe, A.; Smith, R.I., Tang,C. C.; Pulham, C.R. High-Pressure and Variable-Temperature Structural Studies of 2,4-Dinitroanisole (DNAN). Submitted to Propellants Explos. Pyrotech. 2014.

  • Srai, J.S., Christodoulou , P., Harrington, T.S.: Configuring global value networks within industrial ecosystems, in ‘Capturing value from global networks: gaining global competitive advantage through configuring production, supply and service networks’, University of Cambridge, editors. J.S. Srai and P. Christodoulou, 2014 pp. 38-51.

  • Srai, J. S., Harrington, T.S., Alinaghian, L.: An approach to exploring integration benefits of continuous flow technologies within Pharmaceutical supply chains, Chemistry Today, 2014, accepted for publication.


CMAC Artist in Residence

With funding from EPSRC Impact Accelerator Account (IAA) CMAC invested in its own Artist in Residence, Fiona McGurk, who worked with academic, industrial colleagues and the wider general public to accelerate the impact and outreach of the Centre. This project helped publicise the scientific activities and also provide thought provoking insight and inform to researchers. CMAC researchers also contributed to the Images of Research competition, three of the commended entries are shown.

Fiona has a background in the chemical industry having worked as a development chemist for 12 years before pursuing a career in art. This propitious combination of skills helped foster a creative, symbiotic collaboration between the artist and researchers resulting in the creation of a body of new work which was exhibited at the ‘Hidden Doors’ festival in Edinburgh, 28th March – 5th April 2014. This was visited by over 7,500 people and achieved 5/5 from Scotsman. www.fionamcgurk.co.uk


Funding Highlights

  • Three EU H2020 collaborative bids have been submitted. As an academic member of A.SPIRE, CMAC is working on various proposals against future calls.

  • EU COST (Co-operation on Science and Technology) – academic and industry support to successful EU academic network bid on crystallisations fundamentals led by Simon Lawrence (Cork).

  • Award of £22.7 four year project: Reconfiguring Medicine and End-to-End Supply Chain (ReMediES) from the Advanced Manufacturing Supply Chain Initiative (AMSCI).

Visit by Swiss Ambassador Dominik Furgler  

Other CMAC News

  • The Swiss Ambassador Dominik Furgler, visited CMAC on 28th March to discuss potential UK – Swiss opportunities.

  • Welcome to Dr Blair Johnston, University of Strathclyde and Dr Andy Alexander, The University of Edinburgh who officially became CMAC Co-Investigators in April.

  • CMAC in the News: New Medicines, Better Medicines, Better Use of Medicines – Read More >>

  • Congratulations to Prof David Littlejohn in his new appointment of Dean of Science at the University of Strathclyde commenceing August 2014.

  • Welcome to Dr Chris Price (formally GSK) who has joined us at the University of Strathclyde as an EPSRC Manufacturing Fellow.


Past Events

  • Denise Logue and Natalia Dabrowska (Centre PhDs) presented their work at the CPACT research day on 12th March, an opportunity to build links between the two communities.

  • Measuring Molecular Assembly workshop, 1st - 2nd May, NPL, Teddington. CMAC Co-I Prof Chick Wilson and researchers Dr Karen Robertson and Dr Anna Jawor-Baczynska presented their research at the Measuring Molecular Assembly Workshop organised by the National Physical Laboratory and the EPSRC Directed Assembly Grand Challenge Network. Read More >>

  • Dr Blair Johnston, CMAC Co-I, attended Informatic Design For Chemical Synthesis Event in London on 12th May 2014.

  • Researcher Naomi Briggs, presented her work at Polymorphism and Crystallisation 2014, 19th – 21st May, Orlando Florida.

  • Craig Johnston and Clive Badman presented @ Pharma Flow, 2nd – 3rd  June in Berlin, to a European manufacturing and supply chain audience on CMAC, learning from other industries and collaboration.


Meet us at these events

  • Researchers presenting at the 45th Annual BACG Conference, 13th – 15th July, Leeds.

  • 2nd Northern Postgraduate Chemical Engineering Conference, 31st July – 1st August, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh.

  • 19th International Symposium on Industrial Crystallization (ISIC), 16th – 19th September, Toulouse, France.

  • 3rd Annual Manufacturing the Future Confernece, 23rd – 24th September, Glasgow, UK.

  • Full listing of events is available on our website.

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