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About

Dundee is one of the most exciting and dynamic biomedical and life sciences communities in the UK. This small city is home to the University of Dundee, one of the leading universities in Europe for research in life science, and our neighbours are a unique mix of international academics and leading life sciences companies revolutionising the way the world views this small northeast corner of Scotland.

The patented technology underpinning Cypex’s products was developed at the University of Dundee during a five-year project in partnership with a number of leading international pharmaceutical companies. The technology enables the expression of human drug-metabolising enzymes in bacteria, without the need for large modifications to be made to the proteins.

Since the release of our first recombinant cytochrome P450 (CYP) in early 2000, we have rapidly expanded our portfolio to more than 100 products covering human drug-metabolising enzymes (including CYPs, SULTs, UGTs, CES and AOX), mouse, rat, monkey, pig and dog CYPs, fine chemicals for use as substrates, metabolite standards and inhibitors, and a range of antibodies. We have also obtained the prestigious ISO 9001 quality accreditation.

Drawing on our expertise in expressing recombinant cytochrome P450s (CYP) and in drug metabolism, we also offer a bespoke service for custom protein expression and the production of drug metabolites.

To complement our high-quality products, we have maintained close links with the University of Dundee and the industrial members of the consortium involved in the original project. This enables Cypex to remain at the forefront of in vitro drug metabolism technology.

We work with international pharmaceutical companies and world-leading academics to provide relevant tools to give reliable early insight during initial stage drug development and research studies. Here’s what they have to say about working with us.

Learn more about how we work

Our Lead Scientists

Michael Pritchard

Michael’s academic background speaks for itself.  A graduate of the University of Cambridge, with post-graduate degrees from the University of Aberdeen, Michael was awarded a Royal Society Fellowship that offered a postdoctoral research fellow post at the Centre du Médicament in the French town of Nancy.

When he returned to the UK, Michael held a fellowship role with the University of Dundee, and continues to play an active role in education by hosting an annual event for local students from Abertay University to find out more about the research methods developed at Cypex.

Michael is an active member of the International Society for the Study of Xenobiotics (ISSX) and keeps up to date with advances in technologies and approaches by sharing knowledge with industry peers.

With a keen interest in family heritage and finding out more about his own family tree, Michael’s thorough approach will no doubt unearth some treasures!

Michael Voice

With a degree in Biochemistry from the University of St Andrews, Michael went on to study his Ph.D at the University of Dundee, and undertook postdoctoral research fellow posts at the University of Edinburgh and the University of Dundee.

His love of learning extends to his role as a student industry supervisor, providing CASE Ph.D students with enhanced training and the benefit of his years of industry experience.  He has the ability to share complex methodologies in a simple and engaging way, reflected in his commitment to mentoring new talent and sharing knowledge with industry peers.

Michael enjoys working closely with customers to get a comprehensive understanding of their projects to develop the right solutions to overcome their challenges.  His academic knowledge is kept up-to-date by regularly attending industry events and conferences to learn more about modern technologies and approaches.  He has been a member of the ISSX finance committee for a number of years.

When not in the lab, Michael can be found in the air or on a rugby field! Michael holds a private pilots license and is a regular at the local airstrip in Dundee, and has coached youngsters on the rugby field for over 10 years.

Andy Shepherd

We’re delighted to introduce you to our new Production Scientist, Andy Shepherd. Joining Cypex in July, Andy brings 27 years of experience in protein production and screening to our small but specialist team. We’ve caught up with Andy to find out more about his experiences and what his role at Cypex entails.

When did your interest in the sciences begin?

“I’ve always been fascinated by science. Looking back, my curiosity peaked when I was in secondary school. I had a fantastic teacher; you know the type – their passion shines through in every lesson, and they make ordinary learning an extraordinary experience. Before long, I was hooked, and my intrigue led me down the biology path. It’s a route I’m glad I embarked on, and my life has been consumed by science ever since.”

How did you put your curiosity for biology into practice?

“After school, the obvious next step was to venture into further education in the field of my choice. I studied Applied Biology at Nottingham Trent University. Like every great Romcom, this is also where I met my wife. It’s a funny story really, I was late to my first lecture, and the only spare seat was next to a nice girl who shared my enthusiasm for biology… As they say, the rest is history! Together, we embarked on a similar career path. After moving to Dartford, I enjoyed my first post-graduate job as a Senior Tissue Culture Technician. I feel very grateful that my first job in industry gave me that essential foundation and continued passion for science from a fantastic group of scientists. It seems that every day is a school day, so the learning didn’t stop there. My future supervisors always encouraged me; to push me out of that comfort zone; to better myself. The next ten years would see my big move to Scotland as my wife pursued a position at the University of Dundee. Since moving to the city of discovery, I’ve worked as a Research Scientist and a Protein Purification Technician. In early 2021, I found myself in the market for a new role, and that is where my journey at Cypex began.”

What intrigued you about the role at Cypex?

“I’ve always been interested in protein production, and it’s what I’ve spent the vast majority of my career exploring. Experimentation and curiosity are in my DNA, and it just so happens Cypex designs DNA expression constructs! I initially reached out to Cypex through a spec letter. At the time of sending, there were no positions available. Three months later, the planets aligned, and I’m now proudly placed as a Production Scientist with the Cypex team.”

What does your day-to-day role as a Production Scientist look like?

“I largely support with the production of the recombinant xenobiotic metabolising enzymes that Cypex is known for. “Each day varies but often consists of growing E. coli and insect cells as our choice of protein expression systems, ensuring we successfully see production through to create the enzymes our customers require. While I’m still new into my role at Cypex, the team have been incredibly welcoming, and I’m enthusiastic about my future with the organisation.”

Outside of science, what do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

“When I’m not donning a lab coat, I thoroughly enjoy learning new languages. I can speak some Spanish, and I’m currently learning Polish; I find language fascynujący. My intrigue for language is fused with my love for travel, having ventured to the Galapagos Islands, Amazon rainforest, French and Italian vineyards, the odd local distillery and of course, beautiful Kraków in Poland. I’m also a keen gardener and enjoy watching the greenery change throughout the seasons. My appetite for learning will always be my number one passion, and I’m excited to be working alongside fountains of knowledge at Cypex.”

Acknowledgements

We would like to acknowledge the contribution of the following companies (some of whom have now merged) to the LINK P450 programme, without which our high-quality reagents would not have been developed:

Astra
Glaxo
Janssen Pharmaceutica
Lilly
Novo Nordisk
Parke-Davis
Pfizer
Roche Products
Sanofi-Winthrop
Servier
SmithKline Beecham
Wellcome
Wyeth-Ayerst
Zeneca

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