Aurelia Bioscience, the early-stage contract research organisation (CRO) set up by scientists from AstraZeneca after the company decided to close its UK research and development site in Charnwood, Leicestershire, has announced its first major drug-discovery contract, with Eisai UK.

Based at its European Knowledge Centre in Hatfield, Eisai UK is using Aurelia's screening expertise to support its ongoing drug discovery programmes.

“We are delighted to have developed a successful working relationship with Aurelia in a relatively short space of time,” commented the UK subsidiary’s principal scientist, Toshal Patel.

Aurelia sees the contract as a vindication of its business rationale, which springs from the increased volume of early drug-discovery work being outsourced by pharmaceutical companies, as well as diversification in the types of organisations now engaged in drug discovery.  

Continued expansion

Aurelia continues to expand its portfolio of projects from across the life science community, “clearly demonstrating that the increasingly diverse world of drug discovery research is adapting rapidly and embracing change”, the company noted.

With headquarters in Nottingham’s BioCity incubator, Aurelia Bioscience is a niche CRO specialising in the provision of bioassay-development, compound-screening, reagent and equipment services for early-stage drug discovery.