Spin out company wins innovation award

A University of Liverpool spin-out company, whose research could greatly enhance drug discovery and development, is this month’s Merseyside Innovation Award (MIA) award winner.

Liverpool Chirochem (LCC) was founded in 2014 by Professor Jianliang Xiao from the Department of Chemistry in conjunction with two of his former PhD students, Dr Jianjun Wu and Dr Paul Colbon.

The business supplies specialist building blocks for pharmaceutical research and biotechnology, drawing upon synthetic methods in asymmetric catalysis, first developed and patented by the university.

Envrionmentally friendly

Chief operating officer Dr Paul Colbon said: “The University of Liverpool greatly facilitated the company formation and made the process exciting. It’s great to be reunited as a team and developing such a revolutionary business.”

The technology, which is licenced by the University to LCC, allows the company to develop a unique line of products using a simple, low cost and environmentally friendly process.

The company is focussing upon the production and supply of chiral piperidines, said to be well known and ubiquitous building blocks utilised in the synthesis of many naturally occurring products, pharmaceuticals and fine chemicals.

Piperidine-derived drugs feature prominently in the top 200 selling drugs with sales of $11.2bn.

The MIA judging panel selects a winning submission every month. At the end of the entry period, the monthly winners will be whittled down to three finalists before one is crowned the overall winner for the year.

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