Industry

Cascade multistep solvent free processing enabled for mid-scale productivity, using flow chemistry, in PICASCO EU-funded project

1. What is the innovation?
PICASCO EU-funded project means the first continuous 4-step solvent-free flow manufacturing of a pharmaceutically relevant API compound at an industrial scale. Besides common strategies like increasing tubing diameters and flow–rates, PICASCO operates in cascade multistep solvent-free processing.

2. What benefits does the innovation bring?
• The novel concept of end-to-end flow manufacturing in industrial scale.
• The corresponding compact flow mini plant for the synthesis of APIs.
• Process time reduction, faster time-to-market and solvent free operation.
• Productivity on-demand, reducing storage inventory and overcapacity.
• Reduced costs related to reagents, quality assurance and time-savings

3. What commercial success and/or benefit to society has it achieved?
The project includes a complete market and business case proposal carried out with the advice of ttopstart with an evaluation of commercialization strategies. Such approach makes easy to transfer the know-how from academia to industry. That is because already 7 world-relevant Companies are permanent members of the users committee: Corning, Chemtryx, Microinnova, gsk, Kobe Steel, hnp-mikrosysteme and Patheon. PICASCO overcomes the traditional batch manufacturing techniques, achieving comparable quality, but with a simultaneous improvement in efficiency, cost-effectiveness and environmental friendliness, using the last technologies e.g. a Kobelco SMCR. With continuous manufacturing, the manufacturing costs for pharmaceutically relevant compounds could be reduced by an estimated 15% to 50%, including automated production and quality assurance control, which would lead to an increased productivity, since the multistep organic synthesis will be reduced from weeks to hours.

4. Wanna know more about that?
The project is funded by a prestigious ERC-Proof of Concept grant awarded by Prof. Volker Hessel, nowadays at the University of Adelaide (Australia). The execution was performed in both at the University of Eindhoven (Netherlands) and at Microinnova Engineering GmbH (Austria), and was directed by Dr. Marc Escribà Gelonch, nowadays at CNRS-Lyon (France).