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Crystallization at its best

20.4.17

Crystallise! AG has recently joined PARK INNOVAARE, becoming 8th high-tech company in its fast-growing ecosystem. FLTR: Prof. Daniel Kündig, CEO innovAARE AG, Dr. Gustavo Santiso-Quinones, CTO, and Dr. Gunther Steinfeld, CEO Crystallise! AG.

  • Crystallise! AG has recently joined PARK INNOVAARE, becoming 8th high-tech company in its fast-growing ecosystem. FLTR: Prof. Daniel Kündig, CEO innovAARE AG, Dr. Gustavo Santiso-Quinones, CTO, and Dr. Gunther Steinfeld, CEO Crystallise! AG.

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The success of many R&D projects in the pharmaceutical, chemical or agro industries depends on the exact and complete knowledge of a sample. To deliver this knowledge and provide companies with the best analytical services, Crystallise! AG, a new high-tech company now based at PARK INNOVAARE, is taking crystallography to a new level. By the structure determination and absolute configuration of a very small single crystal of a penta-peptide and of a light atom compound, the company has delivered valuable results for their client from the pharmaceutical sector and achieved a significant milestone.

Symbolically enough, founded in September 2014, Crystallise! AG struck off the year that had been proclaimed to be the International Year of Crystallography. After years of career in academia, founders Dr. Gunther Steinfeld and Dr. Gustavo Santiso-Quinones took a leap into the world of entrepreneurs. Their company focuses on the structural characterization of unknown or not fully characterized substances using single crystal X-ray analysis. It provides crystallographic services for the identification of small molecule compounds including the crystallization of the sample. Crystallise! runs an independent laboratory and has its own diffractometer for X-ray analyses. It also has access to Synchrotron radiation for micro-sized crystals. Among its clients are renowned pharma, agro and chemical companies, including F. Hoffman-La Roche and Vifor Pharma, among others.

Every sample can be crystallized

Both chemists demonstrated their tenacity and persistence in the field of crystallization and X-ray crystallography even during their time at the Albert Ludwig University of Freiburg (Germany). This know-how has allowed them to crystallize any sample and even confirm every absolute configuration it has encountered in its three-year history. The company can deal with extremely sensitive air-, moisture- and temperature-unstable materials. Furthermore, it can handle hydrate and solvate systems without any problem. Using state-of-the-art equipment, it can measure smaller crystals compared to many other service providers. Among other things, the company performs the crystallization of pure liquid substances under the cryo-stream of the diffractometer.

Unprecedented results

Thanks to its special experience in crystallization, the company has successfully grown a single crystal of a penta-peptide, an active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) that had puzzled various CRO’s for years. This then led to its structure determination and absolute configuration determination. Using the Swiss Light Source SLS at the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI, Crystallise! has achieved unprecedented results in the absolute configuration determination of small single crystals of a light atom compound. The company is now developing a joint approach to offer newly developed techniques of electron diffraction to the industry world-wide.


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