State-of-the-art facilities at the new National Horizons Centre are helping a North East company to develop skin care and skin health products which will provide benefits for millions of people around the world.
Hexis Lab has created new systems that enable skin care companies to develop and validate efficacy for novel products by skin type or ethnicity.
Hexis Lab is using the £22.3m centre of excellence for the bioscience industries, based in Darlington, to help research the different properties of natural compounds.
In 2019 the National Horizons Centre was opened by Teesside University to provide a dedicated learning and teaching facility working in partnership with business to develop the skills and capability to grow the bioscience industry in the Tees Valley and beyond.
Hexis Lab engages with skin care companies and cosmetics ingredient manufacturers to develop products using its proprietary deep learning algorithms and a big-data computing platform, Pro X®, to conduct computer model simulations and In-silico-screening of a large database of compounds and the effect they have on different skin types.
By using a computational approach rather than conventional testing, Hexis Lab rapidly design, validate, and virtually prototype, new bio-based products for dermatological, nutraceutical, and pharmaceutical applications, in a highly cost-efficient manner and ready them for market.
Hexis Lab Molecular Biologist Dr Ewa Markiewicz and her team will be based at the National Horizons Centre using its facilities and collaborating with Teesside University researchers.
Hexis Lab research will be focused in the area of molecular dermatology to address and facilitate the commercial applications relevant to human skin repair and protection. It will combine human skin cell technologies with artificial intelligence guided discovery to validate novel ingredients and formulations for skin repair, rejuvenation and protection.
Hexis Lab founder and chief executive Dr Olusola Idowu said: “We are now living in a world where global consumers are looking for sustainable ingredients that are environmentally friendly, safe and effective for their individual skin types and conditions.
Our computational modelling approach allows us to rapidly identify effective formulations for different skin types, ethnicities and environmental conditions, delivering highly personalised products.”
“Working at the National Horizons Centre is fundamental to our company strategy. Not only does it have fantastic facilities, but it allows us to work collaboratively and in partnership with the academics here.”
Mr Stevan Lind, head of commercial at Hexis Lab, formerly a general manager with Estée Lauder Companies, added: “This is an incredible world class facility for our cutting-edge innovation in skincare product development; Hexis Lab’s unique pioneering research requires a dynamic collaborative innovation space which the National Horizons Centre provides.”
Dr Safwan Akram, associate director of NHC said: “In addition to funding, a start-up company requires access to expertise and technical facilities. The National Horizons Centre provides the opportunity to interact with world-class academics to test new product ideas and put them into action using some of the best laboratory equipment available in the industry alongside world-leading expertise.
“We are delighted to be working with Hexis Lab, they are a fantastic example of a company which are trying to make a real impact in the healthcare industry, and we look forward to seeing their continued growth.”
For more information on the National Horizons Centre visit tees.ac.uk/nhc.