Under the terms of the agreement, DSM has taken out a license to a range of catalysts and technologies for the synthesis of intermediates used in the life sciences industry, and will be able to include them in the range of services it offers to customers for its contract manufacturing services. In addition, DSM will use the catalysts in its own internal screening programmes.
Chiral Quest's catalysts are mostly used for the synthesis of single-enantiomer (chiral) molecules, which are growing in importance in the pharmaceutical industry.
Organic compounds tend to exist in two mirror image forms or enantiomers. Whether a compound is left-handed or right-handed plays a role in many aspects of modern science, but it has a major impact in the pharmaceutical industry. Today the majority of new drugs being introduced are made in one chiral form, and this has led to an increased market for tools used in their production.
Dr Ronald Gebhard, R&D director of DSM Pharma Chemicals, said "the Chiral Quest products are complementary to our in-house libraries of ligands and will allow us to broaden our products offerings to our customers in the life sciences industry."
Meantime, Chiral Quest has signed a distribution agreement with US chemicals company Sigma-Aldrich, which will act as a distributor for its Binaphane, C3-TunePhos, TangPhos and Binapine ligands.