HepatoChem was founded as a company for metabolite production, hence the name — “Hepato” refers to the liver, which is the organ responsible for most of metabolism. The company provides a sort “chemical liver” for biotech and pharma companies by processing drugs in the same way that they would be processed in the human body. This tests for toxicity and side effects, among other things. HepatoChem is the first company to develop a metabolite-producing technology that can be used in-house, enabling affordable early metabolite toxicity testing and saving companies millions of dollars a year.
“Over the course of the past ten years, this service has worked fine,” Says Marc Bazin, CEO. “But it was difficult to grow the company with just that. There’s a lot of competition, and not enough money to compete with them.”
In the past few years, HepatoChem began developing other chemistry screening kits: new tools for investigation of chemical reaction conditions. They enable scientists to screen multiple kinds of conditions simultaneously with prepared catalysts and reagents, for greater convenience. They currently have a catalog of kits for 40 different types of chemistry.
More recently, the company has dived into the dynamic photochemistry field.
Photochemistry was almost non-existent ten years ago, and researchers have been investing valuable time and energy into setting up light reactions by themselves. HepatoChem has developed some of the first devices on the market to make photochemistry setup easier, including the PhotoRedOx Box, which was constructed here at NSIV. The device uses a unique geometry of mirrors to irradiate multiple samples simultaneously, while limiting the thermal effect of the light source. It’s a compact, efficient photoredox device that can easily be set on any standard stir plate.
The company still does metabolite production as a service in addition to their kits and photochemistry business. They’ll continue to expand the options for pharma and biotech companies as they move forward, helping to make drug and chemical development faster, easier, cheaper, and smarter.
Pictured (L-R) are Quincy Dougherty and Daniel Belschner (summer interns), Marc Bazin (CEO), Ryan Buzdygon (Director of Operations), and John Riccio (Business Operations).