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30 July, 2013 - 14:39 By News Desk

Bespak secures government drug delivery cash

St John’s Innovation Centre

Bespak Europe Ltd in the Cambridge technology cluster, has won major government funding to develop a novel drug delivery device.

Based at St John’s Innovation Centre, Bespak has won an unspecified sum – between £250k and £1million – from SBRI Healthcare, a Department of Health funded initiative to develop innovative solutions that address unmet health needs.

It is one of just three UK projects to win funding in the new SBRI round. The other two companies are based in London.

Bespak’s Cambridge research think tank is developing a new bolus drug delivery device using novel delivery technology that is simple and easy-to-use and will bring cost savings to the NHS, according to SBRI.

With phase 1 technical feasibility project successfully completed, the development work in phase 2 will focus on creating a device which is ready for clinical trials and commercialisation.

Bespak has contributed to the design, development and industrialisation of some of the world's leading medical devices. It manufactures more than 500 million medical devices each year, supporting device programmes from pilot-scale to commercial supply.

The business has long-established partnerships with leading pharmaceutical and biotech industry clients, with several products successfully launched and marketed worldwide.

SBRI said that from five companies awarded phase 1 funding last October, three have demonstrated best value and greatest technical feasibility. At a typical cost of £250,000 to £1million each, the successful companies will be supported and fully funded to take their technologies through to commercialisation and procurement, it adds.

Focused on effective medicines management, the current competition winners are developing innovative solutions to improve the number of patients taking prescribed medication.

This is an area that significantly contributes to unscheduled hospital admissions and costs the NHS £100m every year in drug wastage. The successful projects are expected to bring quality and cost benefits to the NHS through improved healthcare delivery, particularly in vulnerable patient groups and by facilitating continuing care in the home.

Funding for the SBRI Healthcare programme has been secured from the Department of Health. The UK’s innovation Agency, the Technology Strategy Board, runs the series of competitions which are managed on their behalf by Health Enterprise East.

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