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MASS SPECTROMETRY WITHOUT LIMITS: Pioneer MS equipment and Automated Sample Preparation unit to boost New Therapies Development

Project description

A new mass spectrometry system for the quantification of biological drugs

Emerging therapies rely on macromolecules such as proteins and RNA which are much larger than traditional drugs. As a result, conventional mass spectrometry, which constitutes the primary tool for quantitative measurement in the pharmaceutical industry, is ineffective. To overcome this issue, the EU-funded MS-INFINITE project aims to commercialise a system that offers large analyte mass quantification, with 100 % detection efficiency, regardless of molecular mass. The system also enables non-specialists to reproducibly prepare clinical and pharmaceutical material for measurement through an automated unit. Its implementation is expected to boost the development of pioneering therapeutic solutions in medicine.


Modern medicine is evolving. Traditional drugs are small molecules with masses under 1 kDa. Emerging therapies increasingly rely on macromolecules 100 times this size: proteins, nanoparticles, viruses etc. Mass spectrometry is the primary tool for quantitative measurement in the pharmaceutical industry, generating revenues of €1.1Bn in 2015, but is failing to meet new demands. Conventional MS detectors become ineffective at 50 kDa making them incompatible with the emerging landscapes of biotechnology and nanomedicine.
With a combined 70 years’ experience in analytical instrumentation, we plan to commercialise MS-INFINITE, our solution for large analyte mass quantification. MS-INFINITE is a multicomponent system, comprising a cryodetector MALDI-TOF mass spectrometer allowing 100% detection efficiency, regardless of molecular mass. MS-INFINITE also offers a pioneering calibration method, allowing concentration of specific constituents of large analytes to be quantitatively determined by MS for the first time (patent submitted). Through a unique business model, MS-INFINITE will generate revenue by selling an Automated Sample Preparation (ASP) unit to end-users, allowing non-specialists to reproducibly prepare clinical and pharmaceutical material for measurement.
The market launch of MS-INFINITE’s ASP unit (2022) will bring the 1st revenues into our company, generating 18 new jobs, a cumulative profit of €11M, and a 5-years ROI of 5. Despite this, we believe our impact will be far more significant than company growth: MS-INFINITE has the potential to become the standard tool for quantification of analytes too heavy for existing mass spectrometers. With experts estimating that over 100 high molecular weight therapies will enter phase II or III clinical trials in 2020, our innovation will facilitate the development of pioneering advances in biotechnology and nanomedicine, allowing research to advance towards life-saving cures for cancer, Alzheimer’s and arthritis.

Call for proposal


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Net EU contribution
€ 50 000,00
Rue du chateau 10
2000 Neuchatel

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The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Schweiz/Suisse/Svizzera Espace Mittelland Neuchâtel
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Other funding
€ 21 429,00