Biocatalysis is now mainstream processing in the pharmaceutical industry for the synthesis of drug intermediates. The major benefits of biocatalysis include low toxicity, cost effectiveness and ability to cut out numerous chemical steps. Pharmaceutical companies have chosen to widely exploit the use of enzymes in drug and intermediate manufacture.

There are still many enzyme reactions that are simply not fast enough, or where the cost of the enzyme is too high to merit its use. However the judicious application of power ultrasound and sonobioprocessing – SBP - can lead to faster reactions, a commensurate reduction in expensive plant time, and lowering of the required enzyme loading. This applies to any enzyme class across a wide range of reaction types.

SBP can be used on a diverse range of enzyme reactions using whole cell or immobilised enzyme systems used widely in pharmaceutical intermediate synthesis and precursors to drugs that are either already marketed (including both generic and branded drugs) or in late stages of development, and where there is opportunity to improve the process

  • Bioresolution using lipases
  • Bioreduction using ketoreductases
  • Biooxidation using strains of Streptomyces

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