• We are catalysts for innovation, commercialising next-generation technologies developed by

    The University of Manchester’s world-class research base

    • £360m+ invested by venture funders

    • 40+ spin-out companies created

    • 7,500+ licences and IP partnerships concluded

    • 4,000+ invention disclosures received

    • £115m+ IP and R&D revenue generated for the University

  • We are catalysts for innovation, commercialising next-generation technologies developed by The University of Manchester’s world-class research base

    • £300m+ invested by venture funders since 2004

    • 40+ spin-out companies created

    • 4,800+

      licences and IP partnerships concluded

    • 3,700+ invention disclosures received

    • 1,300+ jobs generated across various industry sectors

    • £105m+ IP and R&D revenue generated for the University

Archive for September, 2012



University of Manchester Community Interest Comany (CIC), STORM® is supporting over one hundred UK organisations working together to broadcast a message of hope on World Suicide Prevention Day.

London, 10th September, 2012: Open Minds Alliance CIC, Samaritans and the Royal College of Psychiatrists are leading a coalition of more than one hundred UK organisations – from mental health bodies to the Professional Cricketers’ Association – to spread the message that it is possible to overcome suicidal thoughts and feelings and that there are many resources available to help those who are struggling to cope.

A film entitled “U Can Cope” is launched today featuring a number of very strong, emotional and honest testimonials by men and women who, for very different reasons, had found themselves thinking suicide was the only option. They all sought help, however, and came to realise they were not alone, that it was a huge relief to talk to someone about their problems and that they could find new reasons for living.

The narrator is the Irish-born singer and actress, Linda Nolan (one of the famous Nolan Sisters), who says Samaritans helped to save her life when both her husband and mother died while she herself was suffering from breast cancer.

The film has been funded by a number of leading charities working to reduce suicide, alongside professional bodies, primary care and training organisations. It includes expert commentaries from Consultant Liaison Psychiatrist, Dr Alys Cole-King and Professor Stephen Platt, a Samaritans’ Trustee and eminent academic in the field of suicide prevention. It promotes three main messages:

  • Anyone can experience suicidal thoughts,
  • There is always hope,
  • There is always help.

Dr Alys Cole-King: “Suicidal thoughts start because people feel overwhelmed by their problems or their situation and find it hard to ‘see a way out’. It’s not that they necessarily want their life to end, it’s just that they cannot cope with their emotional or physical pain any more.”“The underlying reasons are different for each person. Sometimes it may be due to a mental illness or triggered by things like the loss of a relationship, the loss of support, physical illness, financial worries, appearing in court or the death of a loved one. All these are types of event that any of us can (and do) experience during our lives. However, no matter how desperate you feel, if you know where to get help and how to get help, you can get through the crisis.” Dr Alys Cole-King & Prof. Stephen Platt.

The message of the “U Can Cope” film is backed up by three new resources which offer contacts, guidance and practical help to people in distress in the form of leaflets and on-line via the Connecting with People and Royal College of Psychiatrists’ websites. They are called:

  • “Feeling On The Edge? Helping you get through it”;
  • “Feeling Overwhelmed? Helping you stay safe”;
  • “U Can Cope”.

The film is due to be shown at today's joint launch event for the Call to Action for Suicide Prevention in England and the Government’s Suicide Prevention Strategy.

The film can be viewed on STORM's website.

F2G Ltd Completes $30 Million Financing Round to Fund Pre-clinical and Clinical Development of Novel Anti-fungal Compounds

Manchester, UK, Sept 5th 2012 – F2G Limited, an antifungal drug discovery and development company, today announced the completion of a $30 million equity financing round in which two new investors (Advent Life Sciences and Novartis Bioventures) joined the existing syndicate (Sunstone Capital, Merifin Capital, K Nominees, and Astellas Venture Fund). These funds will be used to select a clinical candidate from the F3 series of advanced preclinical analogs and proceed to first in man studies. The F3 series represents a proprietary group of compounds with highly potent and selective activity against Aspergillus species and other moulds, which act via a totally novel mechanism. Aspergillus infections are a serious threat in immune-compromised patient populations and result in a high rate of mortality even with the most effective treatment currently available. Dr Richard White, chairman of F2G, commented, "We are delighted to welcome two top tier investors into F2G. We now have a first class international syndicate, including the venture arms of two major pharmaceutical companies."

Shane Kelly, previously the CEO, is leaving the company to pursue another opportunity. Dr White will assume the expanded role of Executive Chairman and noted "We would all like to thank Shane for his tireless and steadfast management of the company over the last 10 years and for bringing us to this successful juncture. We wish him well in his new venture."

Dr Raj Parekh of Advent and Dr Anja König of Novartis Venture Funds will both be joining the Board of F2G. Raj Parekh, General Partner at Advent said, "The F2G molecules show a compelling and novel profile and have the genuine potential to be first- and best- in-class agents for the treatment of invasive aspergillosis, which remains a serious unmet medical need. We look forward to working with Richard and the team to bring these molecules to an early clinical evaluation."

About F2G Ltd:

Based in Manchester, UK, F2G Ltd is dedicated to the discovery and development of new and clinically superior drug classes to treat life-threatening systemic fungal infections in at-risk patient populations. The antifungal market is currently estimated at over 6 billion dollars annually and is growing steadily year on year. Market growth is expected to increase with the emergence of new clinical indications in allergies and asthma. The company has impressive internal capabilities, employing a core team of scientists with a unique understanding of the antifungal arena, supported by an experienced management team.

For more information visit www.f2g.com

Conformetrix to present at ELRIG Drug Discovery 2012

University of Manchester spin-out, Conformetrix Ltd, a leader in optimising drug discovery and design, will be presenting at ELRIG Drug Discovery 2012 in Manchester on September 6 2012. The presentation, 'The application of ligand conformational preferences in drug discovery', will discuss how the tuning of conformational preferences can be used to optimise the potency of drug candidates.

As well as insights from Conformetrix's proprietary preclinical drug discovery programmes, Senior Medicinal Chemist Barrie Martin will discuss projects in which the dynamic 3D-structures of two drug molecules were solved.

Conformetrix’s NMR technology determines accurate three-dimensional structures – or conformations – of drug molecules in their bioactive states. This is achieved without the need for traditional structural information regarding the protein target of each drug and provides researchers with valuable information on how development-stage compounds are likely to interact with their targets. This new information should improve the efficiency and quality of the lead identification, lead optimisation and candidate selection stages of drug discovery programmes.

For more information about Conformetrix, please see www.conformetrix.com