Microgravity Research & Development:
Opportunities for Pharma and Health industries
Portugal Space promotes the Seminar Microgravity Business - Space R&D for the benefit of everyone which brings together an impressive set of renowned experts on the potential of space exploration in the field of Pharmaceutical and Health R&D.
Thomas Pesquet, ESA astronaut, testing the Aquapad system at the ISS. The system simplifies water quality analysis, as most of the water at the ISS is recycled. By simplifying the analysis process, Aquapad saves time, which on Earth will be useful in areas of difficult access to drinking water, such as disaster zones.
Space can be the world’s highest and most exceptional laboratory. With this idea in mind, and in the week when the world celebrates the 20th anniversary of the International Space Station, Portugal Space is putting in place a seminar dedicated to Microgravity Business – Space R&D for the benefit of everyone.
The virtual forum, to be held this Friday, November 6th, will focus on the use of Space as an environment of research and development of new medicines, innovative treatments, state-of-the-art medical devices and new materials.
The meeting is dedicated to creating awareness among the Portuguese Pharmaceutical, Health industries and scientists. It will count with the expertise of the European Space Agency (ESA), the Portuguese Agency for Clinical Research and Biomedical Innovation (AICIB), MIT Portugal, Faculty of Medicine, University of Lisbon and Otto-von-Guericke University. Also, Virgin Galactic, Blue Origin, represented by OlympiaSpace, SpacePharma, SENER, Axiom Space and AstraZeneca, will be speaking for the industry. Together they will present the current trends in different areas such as Pharma, Medical Research and New Materials.
“Microgravity Research is one of the many activities that are carried out at the International Space Station, but there are other platforms to access weightlessness conditions both on Space and down on Earth such as parabolic flights or drop towers”, says Mr Joan Alabart. On this matter, the Industrial Relations and Project Manager at Portugal Space stresses the potential of the Space Rider, the future ESA orbital vehicle, planned to be launched in 2022 and to be used for Scientific experiments in microgravity environments. ESA has defined Santa Maria island, in the Azores as potential land site and post-landing processing activities.
The seminar Microgravity Business – Space R&D for the benefit of everyone will be divided into three major themes: “Microgravity for Life Quality – Research and Industrial Application”, “Microgravity for Human Research: Medical/Pharma Applications”, and finally “Access to Microgravity Conditions”. On Medical and Pharma Applications, for instance, Markus Wehland, from the department of Microgravity and Translational Regenerative Medicine, KCHP, at the Otto-von-Guericke University, will be speaking on the influence of microgravity on cancer cells, and how can this help the development of new treatments.
“This Friday afternoon, Mr Puneet Tyagi, from AstraZeneca, will tell us what the company have been doing in Space, namely regarding the evaluation of their current proprietary method of nanoparticle formation in microgravity, identifying opportunities for process efficiencies in particle engineering of nanoparticle formulations”, adds Mr Alabart.
The event will feature the Portuguese Minister of Science, Technology and Higher Education, Manuel Heitor, as well as Ricardo Conde, president of Portugal Space, Dava Newman, director of MIT Portugal and former vice-president of NASA, Richard DalBello, VP Business Development and Government Affairs at Virgin Galactic, among many other. The programme of the event can be seen here.
During the Microgravity Business – Space R&D for the benefit of everyone, promoted by Portugal Space, in partnership with the magazine Marketing Farmacêutico, a set of internationally renowned experts will deliver a suite of crucial information about the potential of space exploration in the field of pharmaceutical and medical Research and Development. They will try to answer questions as is it feasible to use Space and microgravity for R&D? Are the associated costs affordable? What benefits and results have Health industry pioneers achieved in microgravity R&D?
Attending the virtual seminar is free, but registration, which can be made through the Marketing Farmacêutico webpage, is mandatory.