A start-up specialising in analysing substances has relocated its headquarters from Surrey to an campus near Didcot.

Verdel Instruments, which originated from Warwick University in 2019, now occupies laboratory and research and development space at Milton Park.

The move supports the its aim of expanding its innovative mass spectrometry technology.

Mass spectrometers are used to analyse the composition of substances. They identify impurities and compounds in food, the environment and biopharmaceuticals.

Verdel Instruments has developed a new method of analysing the the composition of a substanceVerdel Instruments has developed a new method of analysing the the composition of a substance (Image: Milton Park)

However, conventional spectrometers analyse only one molecular component at a time, which involves large preparation, reanalysis, and storage costs.

Verdel's technique, known as Total Correlation Mass Spectrometry, inspects everything in a complex sample with a single injection, speeding up the process and providing a better insight.

While this technique has previously only been accessible on large, expensive academic machines, Verdel has developed a device that can be retrofitted onto existing benchtop machines, making analysis more accurate and significantly quicker.

It could accelerate drug discovery, analyse wastewater for drug or pathogen monitoring within a population, and assist in lipidomics - a new method quantifying all lipid molecules, (fatty compounds that perform a variety of bodily functions) produced by cells, tissues, or organisms.

Tim Wilson, CEO at Verdel Instruments, said: "Milton Park has already proven to be an established innovation community to expand our network with like-minded organisations.

"The new connections we’ve made while at the park have helped us to develop our technology even further and given us opportunities to collaborate with the University of Oxford to analyse human lipids in greater detail."

He added: "We’re thankful for the support MEPC has given us and are confident Milton Park will be the ideal base for us to refine and improve our technology, giving us ample room to grow, alongside enjoying excellent amenities and transport links right on our doorstep."

Tom Booker, commercial manager at MEPC Milton Park, said: "We’re thrilled to welcome Verdel to Milton Park, giving them the opportunity to work alongside our growing community of biotech innovators such as Living Optics and aVaxziPen.

"Part of our mission is to provide occupiers like Verdel the right environment and tailored space to attract talent and expertise, while also giving them the flexibility to grow and adapt quickly, surrounded by other like-minded companies.

“We’re looking forward to supporting the Verdel team as they continue to make strides in evolving their technological capability to even greater heights.”

Milton Park is has nearly three million square feet of floor space and is home to more than 250 organisation.