The University of Nottingham is collaborating with industry and research partners in a new centre in Brazil to develop greener drugs.
GlaxoSmithKline’s partnership with the São Paulo Research Foundation (FAPESP) will create a new Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Chemistry, with Professor Chris Moody, from the University’s Faculty of Science, playing an integral role.
GSK is already supporting a Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Chemistry in the UK based at the University. Once the new centre in São Paulo is established, it will form scientific links with GSK and the University to facilitate the sharing of knowledge and expertise between Brazilian and UK researchers.
The centre will focus on sustainable chemistries most relevant to the discovery and development of medicines, including improving synthetic efficiency, sustainable solvents and renewable feedstocks from agricultural waste. This will make a key contribution to defining a new paradigm in the discovery and manufacturing of medicines that will help reduce the impact on the environment, whilst optimising the use of increasingly scarce natural resources.
Professor Chris Moody, Sir Jesse Boot Professor at The University of Nottingham, said: “We are delighted to extend our collaboration with GSK into this new venture in Brazil. The Nottingham Centre of Excellence will be housed in the unique GlaxoSmithKline Carbon Neutral Laboratory for Sustainable Chemistry now being built on our Jubilee Campus, where it will be ideally placed to run a wide range of collaborative projects. We are looking forward to working with Brazilian colleagues.”
Under the terms of the agreement, there will be a call for proposal to universities located in State of São Paulo which will be responsible for implementing the project in Brazil.
Rogerio Ribeiro, Senior Vice President, Emerging Markets & Asia Pacific, GSK said: “GSK has a vibrant and growing business in Brazil and, as part of our continued investment in science in Brazil, we are delighted to announce our support for the new sustainable chemistry centre. This will be an important enabler towards our goal of reducing the environmental impact of both the discovery and subsequent manufacturing of drugs to help us meet our target of being carbon neutral by 2050.”
GSK has agreed in principle to co-fund the centre with FAPESP, investing approximately £400,000 per year during a 10-year collaboration which will be matched by FAPESP.
The University of Nottingham already has strong links with Brazilian research institutions through its partnership and joint representative office in southern Brazil with the University of Birmingham. A joint delegation to the country in October 2013 included the launch of a second joint funding call with FAPESP, to support research projects between Brazil and the UK, and the third year of their Brazil Visiting Fellows programme. This scheme provides an opportunity for early-career researchers to spend time at the UK institutions working with leading academics.
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Notes to editors: The University of Nottinghamhas 43,000 students and is ‘the nearest Britain has to a truly global university, with campuses in China and Malaysia modelled on a headquarters that is among the most attractive in Britain’ (Times Good University Guide 2014). It is also the most popular university among graduate employers, the world’s greenest university, and winner of the Times Higher Education Award for ‘Outstanding Contribution to Sustainable Development’. It is ranked in the World's Top 75 universities by the QS World University Rankings.
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