Cell-free protein synthesis research wins grand prize at Korea Biopharmaceuticals Award

2021.11.15 14:42:16 | 2021.11.15 14:43:19

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The idea of shortening manufacturing process on recombinant proteins like antibody therapeutics using a cell-free protein synthesis platform won the grand prize at the Korea Biopharmaceuticals Awards last week.

The technology can speed up development of new biologics by dramatically shortening the time spent in the process of cell culture and cell line development. When applied on antibody drug discovery, it is possible to simultaneously produce dozens of candidate drugs with a single synthesis experiment, said Dr. Baik Jong-youn, a biological engineering professor at Inha University, who has led the research.

“Establishing a purification process is essential when conducting research, and I am grateful to receive support and advice from Cytiva in my research,” the professor added.

Dr. Na Jung-hyun, a pharmaceutical engineering professor at Sangji University, received the Maekyung Media Group Chairman Award at the ceremony for his contribution to the development of an antibody candidate that neutralizes a Covid-19 variant.

The professor has discovered an effective substance that specifically binds to the receptor binding site of alpha and delta variants. He said he will use a variety of protein engineering technologies to discover candidate substances that are highly effective against new variants that will emerge in the future. His team is currently conducting research on candidate substances that have excellent neutralizing effect against new variants through nanobody used in pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, and basic research fields.

Nanobody is an antibody platform derived from camel antibodies such as IgG2 and IgG3, which are known to have low immunogenicity and potential as therapeutic agents because it is similar in sequence to human antibodies.

By Kim Si-gyun and Minu Kim

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