Small molecule chromatography demand driving expansion, says services firm

By Fiona BARRY

- Last updated on GMT

Reach directors Phil Abbott, Duncan Cliff and Peter Ridgway
Reach directors Phil Abbott, Duncan Cliff and Peter Ridgway

Related tags High performance liquid chromatography

UK firm Reach Separations is doubling its lab space as pharma companies call for more chromatography services.

The expansion at the company’s headquarters at BioCity in Nottingham, UK is driven by increased outsourcing demand for specialist purification, said the company. 

"There is an increasing trend that small molecule therapies are becoming more complex, often chiral in nature,​” Business Development Director Peter Ridgeway told

As a result, synthetic approaches have become more difficult, especially when aiming to produce a single enantiomer – a chiral molecule that is a mirror image of another. 

Chromatography is able to bypass this difficulty, provided the expertise and capability exists.  Reach Separations has both facets in abundance and a drive to turn around the purification process as quickly as possible.  So outsourcing chromatography purification is now an absolute solution.​"


The company has bought a UPC2 ​system for liquid chromatography, a QDa mass spectrometry detector, HClass Ultra Performance Liquid Chromatography equipment, rotary evaporators, and two preparative Supercritical Fluid Chromatography (SFC) machines for mass spectrometry. 

Phil Abbott, previously AstraZeneca’s Separation Science Group Leader, and now Technical Director at Reach, said the expansion will allow the company to do more of the work it is already doing, but faster and for more customers. 

Our clients typically require purified materials as quickly as possible. Our expanded resource and capacity will allow us to work at increased speed to help reduce screen time and get compounds back to clients even quicker, helping meet tight deadlines.​ 

The upsurge in demand we have experienced from companies developing new compounds shows no sign of slowing down so it’s important that we are proactive about expansion and ready to meet the needs of new and existing clients.​” 

The company has a deal with Evotec to provide purification, analytical and small molecule chromatography to the German CRO’s pharma clients. 

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