A new technique to detect good and bad cholesterol using optical spectroscopy was developed in collaboration with external partners at Daresbury Laboratory. The patented technology forms a basis of a venture capitalist backed spinout company L3 Technology Ltd (L3T) founded to develop the concept for medical applications. The company is, in part, supported by the CLF.
Almost a billion cholesterol tests are carried out worldwide every year and with a number of patents in force and pending, the prospects for L3 Technology look bright. The L3T story is an example of how STFC's 'big science' can be brought to bear on a simple yet clever idea that will have societal impact in a number of areas. Apart from the obvious benefits to the health of the population through the availability of a simple, fast test for 'good' and 'bad' cholesterol, the impacts are also economic. These are both direct through savings made over conventional laboratory tests, and indirect through the ability to better target the prescription of cholesterol-lowering drugs by regular monitoring of patients.