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Buisness Roundup

April 20, 2009 | A version of this story appeared in Volume 87, Issue 16

Mitsubishi Gas Chemical is building a new plant in Kashima, Japan, for its Lupizeta EP specialty polycarbonate resins. The polycarbonates boast good optical properties and are used in lenses for digital, cell phone, rearview vehicle, and surveillance cameras.

Air Products & Chemicals will supply hydrogen, nitrogen, argon, and specialty gases such as silane and nitrogen trifluoride to Chint Solar, a Chinese producer of photovoltaic cells. Chint is building a thin-film photovoltaic plant in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province.

Süd-Chemie has opened a plant in Fuldabrück, Germany, to supply environmentally friendly casting cores to BMW for the production of aluminum engine blocks. The cores are made with emission-free, silicate-based binding agents developed in a joint venture between Ashland and Süd-Chemie. They replace organic binding agents.

Verdezyne, a developer of biobased processes for chemicals and fuels, will collaborate with enzyme producer Novozymes. Using computational and biological approaches, Verdezyne will optimize genes that code for industrial enzymes. Novozymes will produce the enzymes in microbes.

Ensemble Discovery will find macrocyclic small-molecule drugs in collaboration with Bristol-Myers Squibb. BMS will pay Ensemble $5 million up front and $7.5 million in research funding. Ensemble calls the molecules Ensemblins. Its technology was licensed from Harvard University.

Dionex has named Frank Witney president and CEO, effective April 30. The former chief commercial officer at Affymetrix, Witney assumes the helm of the chromatography systems firm from Lukas Braunschweiler, who will become head of Ruag Holding, a Swiss aviation and defense firm.

Daiichi Sankyo will use a dry-powder inhaler device developed by the contract manufacturer Hovione to dispense CS-8958, a neuraminidase inhibitor active against the influenza virus. The drug, which is expected to compete against Tamiflu and Relenza, is in Phase III clinical trials.

The Air Liquide Foundation and Institut Pasteur of Shanghai will collaborate on research into respiratory infections. In the three-year program, a team of 10 Institut Pasteur scientists will identify the action of new viruses and develop better diagnostic methods.



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