Afzal Mohammed in a lab
  • Professor Afzal Mohammed will speak on his research to engineer medicines suitable for children
  • The lecture will cover his career to date and chart the role of people and place in the development of novel processes, powders and particles
  • He will deliver his lecture on 5 December 2023.

Afzal Mohammed, Professor of Pharmaceutics in the School of Pharmacy and Associate Dean (Impact and Knowledge Exchange) for the College of Health and Life Sciences at Aston University, will deliver his inaugural lecture on 5 December 2023.

The lecture is entitled ‘From Aston Research Laboratories to Aston Particle Technologies – Developing Medicines for Children’. Professor Mohammed began his academic career developing drug formulations suitable for children, initially working in his own discipline, before moving to a multidisciplinary team comprising experts in engineering, pharmacology, clinical and pharmacy practice, pharmacokinetics and cell biology.

Developing medicines suitable for children is more complex than for adults. To create a medicine, the active pharmaceutical ingredient (API), or drug, is blended with a carrier, known as an excipient. For children, there are fewer safe excipients available, with the added challenge of producing a medicine with a high enough API loading and an acceptable taste. 

To achieve this, very fine particles are necessary, but techniques based on conventional solid-solid particle mixing are limited. Professor Mohammed developed a new technique based on thin layer fluidisation, which delivers controlled de-agglomeration of particles and precise particle layering. This world-first dry particle coating technology allowed him and his multidisciplinary team to engineer fine powders that mask bitter drugs and allow precision formulation of drugs for lung delivery. He has launched a spin-out company, Aston Particle Technologies, to commercialise the technology.

Professor Mohammed said:

“The vibrant research environment at Aston propelled me to challenge contemporary thinking in process design and technology development. By asking ‘why not and what if’, my work led to the development of world’s first dry particle coating technology.”

Professor Chris Langley, Acting Executive Dean and Pro-Vice-Chancellor of the College of Health and Life Sciences said:

“This inaugural lecture promises to provide a fascinating insight into the importance of Afzal’s work within pharmacy. As one of the country’s leading pharmaceutical scientists, this is an opportunity to gain a real understanding of how Afzal has contributed to the development of drug formulation and in turn, benefited countless patients around the globe.” 

The lecture on 5 December will take place at 18:30 GMT in the Susan Cadbury Lecture Theatre at Aston Business School. It will also be streamed online. For tickets please visit the Eventbrite page.

Notes to editors

About Aston University

For over a century, Aston University’s enduring purpose has been to make our world a better place through education, research and innovation, by enabling our students to succeed in work and life, and by supporting our communities to thrive economically, socially and culturally.

Aston University’s history has been intertwined with the history of Birmingham, a remarkable city that once was the heartland of the Industrial Revolution and the manufacturing powerhouse of the world.

Born out of the First Industrial Revolution, Aston University has a proud and distinct heritage dating back to our formation as the School of Metallurgy in 1875, the first UK College of Technology in 1951, gaining university status by Royal Charter in 1966, and becoming the Guardian University of the Year in 2020.

Building on our outstanding past, we are now defining our place and role in the Fourth Industrial Revolution (and beyond) within a rapidly changing world.

For media inquiries in relation to this release, contact Helen Tunnicliffe, Press and Communications Manager, on (+44) 7827 090240 or email:

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