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EnsiliTech - innovation in vaccine storage

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by Startacus Admin


The innovative solution to vaccine wastage - Bristol-based biotech startup EnsiliTech develops tech to enable refrigeration-free vaccine storage.

EnsiliTech+Logo+blue@5We heard stories during the pandemic of shipments of the vaccine going to waste because something went wrong with the refrigeration. Typically, vaccines must be kept refrigerated, at sub-zero temperatures, otherwise they will break down and become unusable. This is such a problem that the WHO estimates around 50% of all vaccines go to waste due to issues with refrigeration during transport. Not only does this come with an obvious financial impact, but when these vaccines could be the difference between life and death for many people, there’s a clear human cost too.

Screenshot Bristol-based biotech startup EnsiliTech had seen this issue and decided that it’s long past time it was tackled. The University of Bath spin-out has been developing a way to do away with the need for refrigeration and keep vaccines from degrading another way. Theirs is an encilication technology, in which they introduce silica nanoshells to the vaccine, which form a protective barrier around the vaccine components. This layer can keep those components at stable temperatures, anywhere between -20 and 80 degrees Celsius. This encilication can be applied to a wide range of biomolecules, and allows the vaccines (and other biological material) to be transported and stored without the need for refrigeration, increasing global vaccine accessibility and greatly reducing wastage.

In January, EnsiliTech announced that they had raised £1.2 million in a pre-seed round led by Science Angel Syndicate (SAS) and the Fink Family Office, with further participation from QantX, Elbow Beach Capital, Innovate UK, and additional angel investors.

This quiet breakthrough could be a significant game-changer when it comes to the transport and storage of certain biological therapeutics, as we have seen how damaging being limited to the 50-year-old global ‘cold-chain’ infrastructure that is currently necessary can be. This cold-chain is not only old, but it costs about £28 billion per year to operate, and is prone to failures. In short, this could be big, and we’re looking forward to hearing more about this startup.



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Published on: 7th February 2023

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