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Research Spin Off Company to Tackle Superbug Infections

MRSA bacteria (CDC)

Scanning electron micrograph image of MRSA bacteria (Janice Haney Carr, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)

Fixed Phage Limited in Glascow, Scotland has been launched to commercialize a technology for tackling bacterial infection and contamination, including superbugs such as MRSA. That technology was developed at the University of Strathclyde Institute of Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences in Scotland.

Fixed Phage’s technology is based on research for treatment and prevention of infection and bacterial contamination in areas such as medicine, food safety, and environmental sanitation. The company will first focus on wound care applications, starting with a prototype wound closure product. It plans to extend that work to wound dressings able to combat bacteria causing wound infections, such as Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus or MRSA.

The technology offered and patented by Fixed Phage harnesses anti-bacterial properties of bacteriophages, naturally occurring viruses which are non-toxic to humans, animals and plants but which can destroy bacteria. Mike Mattey, a lecturer at Strathclyde and chief scientific officer at Fixed Phage says, “We have been able to stabilize bacteriophage and develop the technology for application in combating these infections.” Mattey adds, “We have had highly promising trial results with a prototype and are looking forward to delivering treatment to the patients who need it.”

Scottish venture capital company Barwell PLC is providing capital to support the new venture, in partnership with Scottish Enterprise’s Scottish Co-Investment Fund. The initial development of the technology was funded through the former Synergy Fund, owned by Strathclyde and the University of Glasgow, and through Scottish Enterprise’s Proof of Concept Programme.

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