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New antiperspirant efficacy evaluation techniques based on a disruptive microfluidic technology

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - SUDOCHIP (New antiperspirant efficacy evaluation techniques based on a disruptive microfluidic technology)

Reporting period: 2017-08-01 to 2018-01-31

The goal of SUDOCHIP project is to industrialise and prepare the commercialisation of a new patent-protected microfluidic instrument called SOD4, and a new method of antiperspirant efficacy evaluation. The product will disrupt an existing market and create a new market (R&D and test of raw ingredients) displacing current technology (gravimetry). For Microfactory, it will open new global business opportunities with major international cosmetics groups, SMEs and suppliers of raw cosmetics ingredients. It will enable to generate an ambitious turnover of €36 million in 2023, and to create 87 new European jobs to drive development, marketing and sales efforts.
The innovative polymer technology is a microfluidic instrument mimicking in vivo the action of the antiperspirants underneath the skin. It is an advanced process based on advanced microfluidic materials. The expected project’s outcome will be a validated and industrialised SOD4 instrument, allowing to screen, at an unprecedented speed, and affordable cost, large numbers of new cosmetic formulations to select the best – a task impossible to achieve today (see L’Oréal testimonial above). Our ambition is to become a European and world-wide gold standard, FDA approved, for mandatory efficacy evaluation of anti-perspirants, and, beyond, a whole range of cosmetic products, in a highly growing multi-billions field. Our innovative process will considerably accelerate and facilitate the design of new antiperspirants with more natural ingredients and exempt of carcinogenic components, that otherwise could take many years to design with the current techniques. It represents the latest development trends and strongly reflect expressed consumers and market needs.

Today, the techniques of evaluation of antiperspirants are slow, expensive and unreliable. With the “gold standard technique” - gravimetry -, cohorts of 40 persons are recruited (Fig 1). They follow a rigorous protocol of armpits cleaning for three weeks. Afterwards, they are brought in thermo-regulated labs and their sweat productions are weighted for calculation of the quantity of the secreted sweat and its reduction by antiperspirants. This technique, which has not evolved for twenty years, is time-consuming (a month), expensive (up to 10K€), and unreliable (+/- 40%). In addition, it requires a minimum of collected sweat for adequate quantification and precise technical equipment and trained personnel are mandatory . These drawbacks considerably slow down the design and creation of new formulations.

Today, because almost all the products sold on the market include carcinogenic components, such as aluminium salts , it is urgent to use better techniques of evaluation of the antiperspirants, to reduce health risks. The European Community, alarmed by the risks, urges cosmetic companies to decrease to 0.6% the aluminium concentrations in their formulations (12%-15% today) and actively search for new natural solutions.
Microfactory has invented a microfluidic device and test using natural or artificial sweat that perfectly mimics the in vivo sweating process of the skin to assess the antiperspirants efficacy (without people), one hundred time faster (few minutes), cheaper than other techniques, and highly reproducible (± 10% instead of ±40%)
Objectives: To validate SOD4 machine over a new range of commercial antiperspirant and specific formulation specifically synthesize, and to explore global antiperspirant market and define Microfactory’s best positioning.
Description of work:
Technological assessment
Task 1.1 SOD4 hardware and software optimisation based on recently obtained experimental results: optimize the used material to increase its specificity and deduce the influence of different ingredients in antiperspirant. Develop a new software to extract new types of data and give access to statistical values relevant for our customers.
Task 1.2 Identification of European partners for the SME Instrument Phase 2 market replicates.
IPR, Freedom to Operate (FTO) and risk assessment
Task 1.4 Continue the already established strategy of patenting, and add new patents in our portfolio and establish a solid strategy for IP management.
Task 1.5 FTO searches of patented technology, un audit will be performed to ensure its possibility to commercially exploit the results.
Subcontractor: Marks & Clerk France, Enrico PRIORI (enrico.priori@fr.marks-clerk.com) and Regimbeau, Antoine Blin (Blin@regimbeau.eu)
Task 1.6 Risk assessment and analysis of bottleneck in the ability to increase profitability of the enterprise through proposed innovative solution. As a result, targets and contingencies will be set at correct levels, and risk mitigation strategies will be created in advance.
Market and financial assessment
Market knowledge discovery study to analyse project expected impact, company profitability and growth performances, European market uptake and distributing of innovation.
The ambitious goal of Microfactory is to revolutionize the global and European cosmetic antiperspirant and deodorant market and eventually replace current, archaic gravimetry technology. The most important expected impacts will be the company’s enhanced profitability and growth performance (€36 M in 2023), accelerated international market uptake (2019-2020) and distribution of the new disruptive and highly competitive SOD4 microfluidic machine (~300K€) and test for a mandatory antiperspirant efficacy testing.
Smart Pore Design by Microfactory for antiperpirant testing