Anthem Biosciences, which is ranked among the top 5 leading Contract Research Organisations (CROs) in India, is emerging as a global leader in the domain of Integrated Pharmaceuticals business. Anthem, which calls itself a Contract Research and Innovation Service Provider (CRISP), offers a whole gamut of services dedicated to enabling and sustaining global research efforts in the discovery of new compounds. The company leverages on its core competencies in organic synthesis, process development, analytical chemistry, discovery biology and regulatory compliance.
Mr Ravindra KC, Chief Operating Officer, Anthem Biosciences, Bangalore, India, and Mr Prasad B R, Head, Quality Control and Analytical, Research and Development, Anthem Biosciences, Bangalore, India, were given a demonstration of Shimadzu’s state-of-the-art innovative, intuitive and intelligent New Industry Standard HPLCs during their visit to Shimadzu (Asia Pacific) in Singapore. They were interviewed following the completion of their visit.
What importance do analytical instruments play in your industry?
Analytics is a part-and-parcel of our business. We cannot do anything without analytical instruments, particularly HPLCs. The pharma industry is basically involved in the development of products using a lot of chemistry and some biology. Analysis using HPLCs inevitably play a major role wherever there is presence of chemistry and biology. We use all kind of analytical instruments and protocols, ranging from basic characterisation to final purity checks of the compound or molecule. These include their impurity profiles, their nature, their characteristics, and a lot of other things. We thus need a wide variety of instruments to carry out these kind of analysis. This is why HPLCs and other analytical instruments play a major role in our industry.
What do you have to say about your association with Shimadzu?
I have been in this industry for the past 25 years. We have come across and are used to working with many types of analytical instruments and brands from all over the world. There are big names which linger around all the time, but when you talk about big names there is a price tag that comes along with them. Analytical instruments are a major capital investment. In our kind of business, at least 30-to-40 % of our investment goes into analytical instruments. Shimadzu is one company that is always open to helping the industry and are open to positioning their products especially with competitive price and excellent quality. It is a known fact that everybody in the industry seek for the best quality of products with the least amount of investment. We too look for analytical instruments, which provide the highest performance-to-cost ratio and offer the best quality. Shimadzu is a company that I classify in the high-performance category. Shimadzu has definitely helped us in acquiring more analytical instruments by maintaining their high quality and keeping their prices affordable. Shimadzu is an excellent partner for our business.
You just received the demonstration of our new i-Series product, the Prominence-i. What do you have to say about this product?
I have always believed in innovation. Without innovation nothing moves further. I have seen many companies wind up their businesses due to the lack of innovations. It is common belief in the industry that all that could have been done in HPLC technology has already been achieved. However, I am surprised to see that Shimadzu is continuing to innovate and look for something new, something different and something better, all the time. This is clearly evident in Prominence-i and the new i-Series. According to me, one of the highlights of the product is that the new Prominence-i consumes only 630 Watts of power, a 60% decline in power consumption when compared to other HPLCs, which consume more than 1600 Watts. When several such machines are used in the same laboratory, this would lead to a substantial decrease in the cumulative power consumption. Moreover, the heat generated by these machines would also be less, which in turn will need reduced air conditioning. The new i-Series is truly an Eco HPLC.
Which are your other favourite Shimadzu products?
Of course Shimadzu HPLCs are our most favourite. This is because we use them in large numbers as we keep expanding our business. However, we also have different ranges of Shimadzu products like GCs. We are now looking at advanced instruments like XRD, Particle Size
Analyser, and we are also looking at other instruments for the future.
How do you rate the performance of Shimadzu products when compared to that of other manufacturers?
We service clients all over the globe including, US, Europe, Australia and Japan. Many of our clients, use several analytical instrument brands that are Shimadzu competitors. When we develop products and analytics with Shimadzu instruments and supply it to our clients, there can sometimes be a mismatch in the analytics.
We have had a few cases where we had discrepancy in the results we obtained from our instruments and other brands from our clients side. We have proved to our clients that the instrumentation and brand (Shimadzu) that we use, is not substandard or inferior to the brands that they use. We have used Shimadzu instruments to show them that the data which we generate is equal or sometimes better than what they generate in their labs.
Furthermore, I would like to specially mention that Shimadzu instruments are extremely rugged machines as compared to its competitors. I strongly feel that Shimadzu is an extremely innovative company and the products that it develops are futuristic. We have always had an excellent experience with Shimadzu products.