Press Release: Research Shows Versatility of Bio-Based Platform Chemical As Building Block For Drug Discovery

CircaYORK, UK – 25 June 2020 – New research has found that bio-privileged molecule levoglucosenone (LGO) – a versatile chemical produced by biotechnology company Circa Group – is an outstanding scaffold for the discovery and development of novel and known pharmaceuticals.

Earlier this year, Circa reported the potential for LGO to be an excellent starting material for the synthesis of biologically active compounds, including drugs Remdesivir, Vidaza, Zidovudine, and (-)-Neplanocin A. 

Recent reports from researchers around the world have described the use of LGO as a scaffold for the design and development of novel compounds which show anti-cancer, central nervous system (CNS) inhibition and anti-fungal activity. In addition, research from the Australian National University (ANU) took advantage of LGO functionality to create a new class of compounds with anti-microbial and/or cytotoxic properties.

Martin Banwell, Honorary Professor at the ANU and lead author of the study conducted in collaboration with the University of Queensland, says, "This work further highlights the extraordinary utility of LGO as an abundant chemical building block. Its deceptively simple structure belies the remarkable range of chemical transformations that it can participate in. Of particular note, from our point of view, is the ease with which it can now be converted into its pseudo-enantiomer, iso-levoglucosenone and so providing another suite of fascinating derivatives." 

Tony Duncan, CEO and co-founder of Circa Group, said, “We are delighted that research continues to prove the versatility of levoglucosenone. With applications in many fields, Circa continues to support innovation in drug discovery, leading to new treatments and increasing availability of existing drugs. With production around 1000 kg per month, commercial opportunities for LGO based products are, for the first time, within reach.”

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On Biomaterials


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