New technology developed to help tackle the rising medical problem of antimicrobial resistance has been sold to a global medical products company in a multi-million pound deal.

The agreement means that Scottish Enterprise is set to reap a return on its investment in 30 Technology, a privately-owned biopharmaceutical company founded by Professor Chris Wood of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh. Described as the "most significant advance in combating anti-microbial resistant infections in over 50 years", the firm's nitric oxide (NO) technology has already shown positive clinical results in hard-to-treat diabetic foot ulcers.

30 Technology has sold all of the wound care, research, development and commercial aspects of its platform as they relate to the topical treatment of wounds, burns, and tissue repair to London-listed Convatec Group. Convatec will pay an initial consideration of £45 million, with further payments of up to £131m linked to achieving specific regulatory approvals and commercial milestones.

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The deal will allow 30 Technology, now based in London, to fund development of NO products for other medical conditions in areas  such as respiratory medicine, animal health, oral surgery, rare diseases, and ophthalmology indications. The company noted that each are potentially billion-pound markets.

“This transaction validates 30 Technology’s transformational approach to unlock the potential of nitric oxide to treat a range of infections with a durable and safe treatment," group executive director Syd Hanna said.

"Antimicrobial resistance is one of the key challenges of our time and we believe our technology has huge potential for application across a multitude of increasingly hard to treat indications."

NO is critical to immunity, tissue healing and blood oxygenation. 30 Technology is the first to successfully develop and patent a novel method that can safely deliver high-dose nitric oxide, which would normally oxidise and becomes toxic at tissue surface.