Chiral Rotational Spectroscopy

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Key components of a chiral rotational spectrometer
Key components of a chiral rotational spectrometer

University: University of Glasgow

Sector(s): Healthcare & Pharmaceuticals, Life Sciences

About Opportunity:

Molecular chirality is hugely important to the pharmaceutical (unichiral drug sales > $200bn to date, 95% of drugs chiral by 2020), agricultural and other industries. We offer a new technology to address the challenges currently impeding progress.

Chiral Rotational Spectroscopy (CRS) is a new technique for the analysis of chiral molecules. Sample molecules are illuminated by circularly polarised light, which shifts their rotational energy levels. Microwaves are employed to measure these shifts, via the rotational spectrum of the molecules. CRS is chirally sensitive as enantiomers experience different shifts and thus exhibit different rotational spectra. CRS can also be used to extract new information about achiral molecules.

CRS can be realised by adding circularly polarised light and a static magnetic field to a standard Balle-Flygare Fourier Transform Microwave Spectrometer.

Key Benefits:

  • Determination of orientated chiroptical information –– this offers a new and incisive handle on molecular chirality and is otherwise inaccessible (“we have a shocking small of amount of (this) data… a vast chasm in the science of molecular chirality”).
  • Measuring enantiomeric excess.
  • Probing molecular chirality of racemates –– saving time and $$$ by negating the need for dissymmetric synthesis or prior resolution
  • Inherent sensitivity to isotopic chirality –– opening the door to new products and markets (“there have been very few studies of isotope-generated chirality in biochemistry”).
  • Ability to distinguish between even subtly different molecular forms –– saving time and $$$ by negating the need for prior separation using e.g. chromatography, whilst opening the door for the analysis of molecules with multiple chiral centres (“challenging”) and enabling compliance with new legislation (USFDA).
  • These capabilities all co-exist in CRS.

Applications:

  • Molecular chirality is hugely important to the pharmaceutical,agricultural and other industries.

IP Status:

GB patent application filed in December 2015.

PCT patent application filed in November 2016.

Contact is welcomed from organisations interested in developing, licensing or exploiting this IP with a view to commercialisation.

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