UPM is strengthening its role and patent portfolio in the biomedicals sector with a special focus on personalised medicine. EXPANDING PRODUCT PORTFOLIO
UPM Biocomposites is the frontrunner in circular bioeconomy. Over 50% of the raw materials originates from recycled and renewable sources. NEW BIOCOMPOSITES PRODUCTS LAUNCHED
UPM Formi composite material, made fromwood-based fibres and polymers, is suitable for different types of industrial and consumer products such as furniture and home appliances. The material has a 30–60% lower carbon footprint than fossil-based materials. It complies with the requirements set by the EU for reinforced plastics in relation to the circular economy. The new UPM Formi EcoAce product range is based almost entirely on renewable resources. It contains certified wood or cellulose fibres as well as bioplastics made of wood-based feedstock fromUPMBiofu- els’ production. Production is ISCC PLUS certified, which guarantees that the product meets environmental and social standards along the supply chain. Development of the UPM Formi 3D biocomposite continued in 2020. The focus was on developing technology around large- scale industrial 3D printing.
UPM Biomedicals develops and supplies innovative and sustainable wood-based biomedical products for a variety of uses. The main ingredient of our products is
high-quality nanocellulose, extracted from birch. In the long term, we are aiming for personalised medicine, where treatments are developed from patient’s own cells. Our gels can be used in manufacturing and in treatments. The key enabling factor is the fact that our gels are animal-free and therefore also do not introduce animal DNA to the patients. Meanwhile, we sell our products to two application areas: clinical and life science. In the clinical field , FibDex® wound dressing took the significant step of being introduced to market, when a medical device distributor Steripolar Oy started to sell the product to Finnish healthcare professionals and hospitals. Based on clinical investigation results, FibDex was granted the CE mark in 2019, allowing the marketing and sale of the wound dressing in the EU. Work towards registration with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is ongoing. In life science , our main products are GrowDex®, a range of hydrogels for 3D
UPMBiocomposites offers innovative and sustainable composite materials for various uses in outdoor construction and consumer products. The materials are based on UPM’s own research and development. UPM ProFi biocomposite utilises the cellulose fibres and plastic polymers generated as manufacturing surplus from self-adhesive label material production and from label customers’ label waste. The label waste is collected from UPM Raflatac’s 150 customers and partners from several European countries. Our target is to further increase the use of recycled mate- rials in products. For example, UPM ProFi Piazza decking contains 75% recycled materials, which also includes post-con- sumer recycled plastics. In 2020, our focus was on developing internal efficiency and digitalisation, as well as data-based forecasting models. The launch of UPM ProFi Piazza was a commer- cial success. We also joined the EU Circular Plastics Alliance to boost the use of recycled plastics in consumer goods and, in our case, in UPM ProFi products.
cell culturing and GrowDase®, an enzyme to release the cells from the gel. The main application is in pharma (on the left). The nanocellulose ensures excellent compati- bility even with the most demanding cells, such as stem cells and patient-derived cells. In addition to the existing GrowDex product family on the market, we launched GrowInk™, new biocompatible ready-to-use hydrogels for 3D bioprinting of cells in 2020. We work with global partners to develop new biomedical products and applications. In 2020, we joined a new cancer immuno- therapy focused research and innovation project, Cancer IO. The project will have a significant impact on clinical cancer research, healthcare systems, business and, most importantly, on the lives of cancer patients. The collaboration integrates immuno-oncology (IO) activities with universities, university hospitals, cancer patient organisations and major pharma- ceutical companies.
A NEWMATERIAL FOR REPLACING FOSSIL-BASED PLASTICS
Consumers can now make responsible choices in their everyday life with the launch of the MySoda sparkling water maker. MySoda is a good example of customer cooperation in the development of the new product. Designed by Arni Aromaa from Pentagon Design and manufactured by a Finnish company MySoda, the end result is a sustainable consumer product with an appealing unique design and lower carbon footprint. New MySoda sparkling water makers are being sold in several European countries. One of our most recent innovations for replacing fossil-based raw materials is used in MySoda. UPM Formi EcoAce, a biocomposite is made using certified renew- able fibres and polymers derived from UPM BioVerno naphtha.
SUPPORTING THE GROWTH OF PHARMA
Drug development is challenging, with only 10% of candidate drugs actually making it to the shelf. Time to market is often around 10 to 20 years with very high risk of failure throughout all development stages. High throughput screening is a way to prove drug candidates automatically on cell models and decide, which drugs are moving to the more expensive clinical stages. UPM’s GrowDex and GrowDase have been successfully used in HTS to develop new cancer treatments. The gel makes the results interpretation unequivocal thanks to the reproducibility of the gel composition.
Innovating for the future on page 32 www.upmbiomedicals.com