Cyclofluidic will develop an automated lead-optimization platform.

Pfizer and UCB have created a new company to be called Cyclofluidic that will focus on microfluidic technology development. The U.K. Government’s Technology Strategy Board helped facilitate this deal between Pfizer and UCB and will cofund R&D at Cyclofluidic.

The new entity will be jointly owned by Pfizer and UCB. Each company will have a seat and scientific observer rights on the board.

Cyclofluidic is tasked with developing technologies that automate and integrate flow chemistry and flow biology. Through collaborations with academics and component manufacturers, the company will work on a microfluidic closed-loop lead-optimization platform. The technology will be designed to enable researchers to access expertise in flow chemistry, flow screening, and microfluidic engineering.

The aim is to shorten drug development timelines. Currently, it takes between 12 to 15 years and a roughly $825 million to develop a new medicine, Pfizer and UCB note. One of the most time-intensive parts of research is the screening of potential medicines against therapeutic targets.

Cyclofluidic will also provide training for both flow chemistry and biology scientists at its facility, which will be in the south of England.

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