HP Uses Quality Printing Technology to Enhance Pharmaceutical Industry reports Cartridge Express
Hewlett Packard's foray into drug development
In the last decade, HP's research and development department have been working on the ability to transfer inkjet technology for use in the pharmaceutical lab. The result has been HP's Direct Digital Dispenser (HP D300), a printer-ish system that assists scientists with the development of quality new drugs.
Scientists within the pharmaceutical industry, such as Astrazeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, and Siga Technologies are the major companies utilizing the D300 for such development. SIGA has already used the D300 for the development of an experimental compound titled ST-246. The compound is to be utilized for those afflicted with smallpox who can no longer use vaccines in an effective manner.
So how did HP take the technology from the copy room, and place it in the biochemical lab? The endeavor began nearly five years ago, when HP notice that the technology it utilized for its Officejet Pro X printhead was able to spew tiny drops of int for ultra high-resolution printing.
According to Joe Dody, who is the business manager for specialty printing, he “Thinkjet” has 12 nozzles that drop a miniscule volume of ink, which creates high-definition pictures. At first, Dody's team considered adapting the technology for a drug delivery and discovery system. Eventually, however, they decided it was best utilized solely for the latter, due to the fact they wanted to be on the front-end of the pharmaceutical process. “We imagined the application and we worked with customers to convince ourselves and the industry that we were creating value in doing it,” he says, “So we gained support from HP to make a business out of it.”
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