Sunday, December 02, 2007
Thursday, November 08, 2007
The Nanotechnology KTN will facilitate the transfer of knowledge and experience between industry and research, offering companies dealing in small-scale technology access to information on new processes, patents and funding as well as keeping up-to-date with industry regulation.
Previously served by a Micro and Nano Technologies (MNT) Network, a pioneer for all subsequent KTNs, the new Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network will build upon an existing network of 700 organisations, working with a mix of well established and young innovative companies such as BAE Systems, Proctor and Gamble, Farfield Instruments and Zyvex.
Dr. Mike Pitkethly, CEO of Cenamps said: “In creating a new KTN for micro and nano technologies, Government has recognised the positive impact that such technologies are having on society.
“Knowledge transfer with scientists from a range of disciplines within the KTN programme will allow us to bring the benefits of these enabling technologies to a far wider audience. The possibilities for new products and businesses are likely to open up dramatically, so this is very exciting for the UK.”
The network has already been utilised successfully by Japan Regional Ventures, a company driving technological investment into two regions of Japan, in its efforts to find potential collaborators. Thanks to the support received, the company is ready to meet with representatives from TWI ltd, a company that oversees nanotechnology applications in welding, which can create more safety and stability in rails and building structures.
Likewise, Dr Richard Thompson of Durham University recently used the network to try and find collaborators for his Patterned Microfluidic Devices project. The venture aims to generate devices that could lead to new applications and improved performance in microfluidic systems; fluids that can be controlled at the nanolitre. Since posting his request, Dr. Thompson has received several responses from professionals with complementary expertise.
David Way, Operations Director at TSB, said: “The aim of this important network is to provide a market-oriented focus to broker collaborations that can allow the UK to exploit these new technologies. The TSB is playing a central role in guiding the development of KTNs to help the business community to interact and develop ideas and build relations with the science base and government.”
Nanotechnology covers a wide range of disciplines that involve using materials whose properties at very small scale differ from those at larger scale and provide opportunities to design products with new and improved performance. For example the use of materials at the nano-scale (the smallest atomic scale in science) is being developed to give flexibility and functionality to the materials onto which they are applied. Its potential markets include aerospace, construction and energy as well as the chemicals, electronics and the healthcare industries. Examples of products already being developed include devices that can diagnose medical conditions and clothing that can detect and respond to a person’s stress levels.
Tuesday, September 25, 2007
Consultation launch of Responsible NanoCode for business
The ‘Responsible NanoCode’ has been drafted by a working group established by the Royal Society, Insight Investment, the Nanotechnology Industries Association and the Nanotechnology Knowledge Transfer Network. The working group also includes representatives from companies, scientists, governments, non governmental organisations and trade unions including the chemical company BASF, Unilever, Smith & Nephew, the consumer group Which?, the development NGO Practical Action and the trade union Amicus.
The aim of the ‘Responsible NanoCode’ is to establish an international consensus on what constitutes good practice and to provide guidance on what organisations and businesses can do to demonstrate they are responsibly managing them while the need for further regulation is being evaluated. It is hoped that the voluntary code will contribute to ensuring nanotechnologies achieve their full potential in delivering health, environmental, social and economic benefits at a time when businesses are dealing with technical, social, regulatory and commercial uncertainties concerning these relatively new technologies.
Lord Selborne, chair of the working group, said: “One of the key strengths of the ‘Responsible NanoCode’ is that the working group is made up from, and engaging with, a wide range of businesses, organisations and individuals that are interested in the development of nanotechnologies.
“As a set of high level principles the Code will be aimed at company boards and governing bodies, and we hope they will then be used to inform the whole range of an organisation’s or business’ practices. Because the Code does not primarily focus on operational detail, a wide range of companies and organisations will be able to adopt it.
“We are looking to receive input on the draft Code from a broad range of organisations and individuals from around the world. We would also like organisations to tell us whether they would actually adopt such a Code, how they could be encouraged to do so and how to best evaluate whether those who do sign up are adhering to its principles.”
The Code’s proposed Seven Principles, which will be underpinned by indicators of behaviour a company adopting the Code should display, are:
1. Each Organisation should ensure that responsibility for guiding and managing its involvement with nanotechnologies resides with the Board or governing body
2. Each Organisation should proactively engage with its stakeholders and be responsive to their views in its development or use of products using nanotechnologies
3. Each Organisation should identify and minimise sources of risk for workers handling products using nanotechnologies, at all stages in the production process or in industrial use, to ensure high standards of occupational health and safety
4. Each Organisation should carry out thorough risk assessments and minimise any potential public health, safety and environmental risks relating to its products using nanotechnologies
5. Each Organisation should consider and respond to any social and ethical implications and impacts in the development or sale of products using nanotechnologies
6. Each Organisation should adopt responsible practice in the sales and marketing of products using nanotechnologies
7. Each Organisation should engage with suppliers and/or business partners to encourage and stimulate their adoption of the Code and so assure its own ability to fulfil its Code commitments
More information and a complete draft copy of the Code can be found at http://www.responsiblenanocode.org/
The consultation will run until Monday 12 November. Organisations or individuals interested in being involved should e-mail their comments to email@example.com.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
New healthcare technology development project launched to improve patient outcome and the success rate of haematopoietic stem cell transplants (HSCT)
Known as StemDiagnostics, the consortium will aim to identify new bio-markers (indicators of transplant rejection and clinical complications) and develop medical diagnostic tests that will help practitioners to improve the success rate of allogeneic haematopoietic stem cell transplants (HSCT), treatments for life threatening medical conditions and cancers such as leukaemia, lymphoma and inherited immune disorders.
Around 7,000 such transplants take place throughout Europe each year, but the survival rate is low (40 – 60 per cent) and decreases rapidly with patient age. The application of HSCT therapy is also hampered by the lack of suitable matched donors: only 25 –30 per cent of patients find a compatible sibling donor.
Such transplants involve the use of bone marrow, peripheral blood stem cells and umbilical cord blood as stem cell sources. The project, which follows 3 year’s research by Professor Dickinson and the Consortium, aims to develop tests with the use of the latest bionano and lab-on-a-chip techniques provided by SMEs such as Orla Protein Technologies, also based in North East England. Cenamps, a Newcastle-based centre for emerging umbilical cord blood as stem cell sources. The project, which follows 3 year’s research by Professor Dickinson and the Consortium, aims to develop tests with the use of the latest bionano and lab-on-a-chip techniques provided by SMEs such as Orla Protein Technologies, also based in North East England. Cenamps, a Newcastle-based centre for emerging technologies, will handle commercialisation aspects of the project’s outcomes.
Professor Anne Dickinson, commented: “The project is the first of its kind to bring together research looking at a variety of different biomarkers – or indicators of post transplant complications. These include DNA and proteins. From this work, we hope to be able to develop new diagnostic tools using genomics, proteomics, in vitro bioassays and biochips, to aid in earlier clinical intervention by predicting any complications which may arise in our bone marrow transplant patients.”
StemDiagnostics will develop new proteomic, biological and genomic tests for predicting patient response prior to transplant and subsequently for monitoring of patient response to novel therapeutics for the most severe complication of HSCT – graft versus host disease (GvHD). The consortium aims to bring to the clinic the next generation of diagnostics tests for use in HSCT.
To meet this challenge, StemDiagnostics brings together five of European’s leading small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with expertise in genomic and proteomic testing, diagnostic assay development and biochips, with clinical partners selected for their world-leading research in HSCT and access to clinical samples and patient groups. The SMEs include Mosaiques Diagnostics, Multimmune, IMGM Laboratories, Apotech and Orla Protein Technologies.
Shak Gohir, Business & Programme Manager at Cenamps, added: “We’re extremely excited to see such a life enhancing and life saving research being led from here - the North East of England. StemDiagnostics very much aligns with Cenamps’ core objectives to stimulate and connect research conducted in some Europe’s leading universities and research institutions to resolve issues and challenges that clearly address the real and wider needs of society.”
The programme is funded by the European Commission to the tune of €2.5M over next three years, through the EU Sixth Framework Programme under the Life Sciences and Health theme. The consortium provides for the remaining investment.
Business & Programme Manager
Sunday, August 19, 2007
During 2006, the world's three largest spenders of R&D where the United States (US$330 billion) and China (US$136 billion) followed by Japan (US$130 billion). A 2006 study on global R&D by the Battelle Memorial Institute indicated that China has increased R&D spending annually about 17% over a 12-year period, compared to 4% to 5% for Europe and the United States. The key issue may not be just the investment in R&D in Europe as R&D alone does not increase profits. It is also converting the the results of R&D into commercialised patents, start-up, products and services.
The Chinese economy has enjoyed four consecutive years of at least 10% growth. China's economy expanded by 10.7% in 2006. New economic research reveals businesses in Europe and the US are very scared of the impact but ill prepared to act and lag behind their Asian counterparts on ambitions for the China (中華人民共和國) market. Over 700 business leaders, government officials, leading academics and futurists from across 60 countries were polled in the first worldwide survey to gather views and expectations of China’s global impact over the period to 2020.
The survey conducted by business think tanks Global Futures and Foresight (GFF) and Fast Future provides rich insight into how business attitudes and ambitions for the China market are evolving across five continents. The report ‘The Future of China’s Economy, The Path to 2020 – Opportunities, Challenges and Uncertainties’ published on the 22 March 2007 provides a ‘wake up call’ to the Western business world, warning that to thrive in the changing global economy action must be taken now to make China a key element in future business strategies.
Graham Leach, Chief Economist and Director of Policy for the UK Institute of Directors says, “For UK and Western businesses to stay competitive in the global marketplace, China has to be a key component of their strategy. This study highlights very clearly that business leaders in the west now understand the scale and long term potential of China’s economy and they recognise the massive impact China will have in their markets globally. Despite this, many are still unwilling to respond, hesitant in their China strategies or simply unsure of what to do. It is now time to act on these concerns, start learning about the Chinese marketplace, drawing on the experience of those already doing business in China and actively embracing the opportunity that China presents.”
Key findings of the survey can be found in Insight 5....click here to read more...
You may also find interesting the results of a study conducted by Booz Allen's - Smart Spenders: Global Innovation 1000. This study and report highlights a small group of high-leverage innovative firms who out perform the industry. They are able to reduce R&D investment and still innovate more successfully than their competitors. "Money simply cannot buy innovation". Information on the study has been published by Booz Allen in Insight 4 .... to read the article click here.
Business & Progamme Manager
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Cenamps, in partnership with the Centre for Process Innovation (CPI), hosted a groundbreaking ceremony for PETeC on 27th July 2007. PETeC, a unique plastics electronics technology centre, is set to establish North East England as a global leader in the application of plastic electronics.
The first spade was inserted into the ground starting construction of the £10m project at NETPark, County Durham, where the new facility is to be based.
PETeC will be established as a national prototyping operation providing world-class facilities, services and expertise at the hub of a UK-wide network in plastic electronics. The state-of-the-art facilities will include high-tech clean rooms and laboratories, as well as production and testing equipment which will be available on an open access basis to meet the needs of industry.
PETeC will offer space, resource and expertise for companies to research and develop new technologies and their applications, prototyping and pre-competitive stage mini-manufacturing of products based on plastic electronics. These will include smart packaging, real-time smart packaging, real-time newspapers, intelligent signage, point-of-care medical diagnostic devices, novel drug delivery devices, printed electronics for consumer products, flexible solar cells and solid state lighting.
Dr Mike Pitkethly, CEO of Cenamps commented: “This centre will provide a bridge between the lab and the factory to facilitate the commercialisation of new products. With ever-increasing competition from places such as India and China, it is crucial that the UK continues to offer the world class facilities for developing plastic electronic products, and PETeC will be integral to the UK’s competitiveness in this emerging group of technologies”.
The project has been funded by One NorthEast, The Northern Way and the European Regional Development Fund.
For further information contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, August 08, 2007
The successful candidate will actively lead the early-stage technology commercialisation activities of Cenamps BioNano research and innovation projects and be responsible for Cenamps IP portfolio and interests. Applicants must demonstrate experience in the innovation and commercialisation of emerging healthcare technologies such as lab-on-a-chip devices, biomaterials and sensors and/or other medical devices ideally gained by working in industry and will be skilled in focusing research and innovation activities in alignment with identified needs and market drivers.
The successful candidate will work on a number of high profile regional and European research projects, engaging closely with our academic and industrial partners to drive forward commercialisation strategies, uncover routes to market, identifying specific technologies requiring IP protection, publishing thought leadership articles and presenting at international conferences. Two of our high profile European projects aim to innovate new medical devices for diagnosing deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and improving patient outcomes from haematopoietic stem cell transplant (HSCT) treatment.
With an established network of contacts, the Commercialisation Manager will be adept at generating, shaping and following through on new project and business opportunities. Experience in proposal development, venture capital, government R&D grants and medical device regulations is strongly preferred, in addition to knowledge of the medical sciences and trends in the healthcare sector. Across a number of key industries including energy, health and chemicals, an important aspect of the opportunity will be to assist and mentor high-tech SMEs on technology innovation, investment sources, partner searching and commercialisation. Candidates with a MBA and PhD in relevant fields, with experience gained from industry, are strongly preferred.