Separation Science in an Evolving Pharmaceutical Industry

Chromatographic Society/RSC : An interestingly diverse list of presenters provided some valuable insight into the risks, strategies and pitfalls being observed in today?s ever-changing pharmaceutical market.

The keynote speakers provided rich debate. Chris Riley (Riley and Rabel Consulting) opened the meeting with some colourful experiences in establishing ICH guidelines as a member of that particular committee. He also provided testament to the roles that separation science has played in pharmaceuticals over the last 60 years.

Adrian Clarke (Novartis, Basel) ran through how advancements in chiral chromatography were keeping pace with an ever changing environment of validation. Key advancements in separation science, particularly around instrumentation and column chemistries were also discussed.

An interesting variety of talks then followed, ranging from solid phase extraction to appropriate use of CAD detectors.

Lee Williams and John Lough provided insight about how the University of Sunderland is involved in the changing pharma market with a more commercial approach from academia. Other talks of note were Paul Russell?'s (Unilever) presentation on complex toxicological risk assessments, and cleaning validation insight to NHS blood transfusion from Sara Chow (NHS). Genetoxic impurities were also a strong topic of debate with Andrew Teasdale (AZ) discussing challenges in this field from a large pharma perspective.

The meeting suggested a worrying trend. Most of the audience were academic, followed by vendors and just a snippet of industry based people. As the Pharma industry ploughs through this latest evolutionary phase might we expect this trend to continue?

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