USA – Integral Molecular, a developer of antibodies against membrane proteins, has signed an exclusive worldwide antibody license agreement with AstraZeneca to develop cancer therapeutics.
Integral Molecular will grant AstraZeneca an exclusive license to a collection of highly specific monoclonal antibodies for use in oncology. All research, development, and commercial activities will be handled by AstraZeneca.
AstraZeneca licensed antibodies were discovered and characterized using Integral Molecular platforms designed to generate antibodies against structurally complex membrane proteins.
The MPS Antibody Discovery platform, Lipoparticles, Membrane Proteome Array, and Shotgun Mutagenesis Epitope Mapping technologies were used in tandem to create diverse antibodies with high specificity.
“This agreement with Integral Molecular will allow AstraZeneca to generate additional novel cancer therapies and advance our goal of delivering personalised treatments to improve patient outcomes,” said Mark Cobbold, VP, Discovery, Oncology R&D at AstraZeneca.
“These antibodies can be incorporated into a number of therapeutic modalities and align with AstraZeneca’s ongoing pursuit of high-quality innovation to deliver life-changing treatments that increase the potential for cure,” added Cobbold.
“Specificity is incredibly important for therapies designed to eliminate cancer cells, since mistargeting can have serious safety ramifications for patients,” said Benjamin Doranz, CEO and co-founder of Integral Molecular. “Our program has produced antibodies with picomolar affinity and high specificity even against conserved targets that have proven difficult to generate antibodies against. The specificity of these antibodies is a testament to the dedication and efforts of our talented team.”
In other relate new, Integral Molecular and Integrated BioTherapeutics (IBT), two biotechnology firms with deep expertise in virology have collaborated to create engineered proteins that could lead to next-generation vaccines with broad protection against Ebola and related viruses.
Integral Molecular used Shotgun Mutagenesis, which is part of its GeneCanvas protein engineering platform, to identify mutations in the Ebola virus envelope glycoprotein that make it more visible to the immune system.
The engineered proteins, which were recently granted a patent by the US Patent and Trademark Office (US 11,135,280 B2), have the potential to transform vaccine design strategies in order to provide effective protection against the Ebola virus and other related viruses.
Ebola virus causes a severe disease with a 50% mortality rate, and available vaccines may not protect against other Ebolavirus species due to differences in their envelope glycoproteins.
“Having battled numerous viral outbreaks and now a global pandemic, the scientific community is more attuned than ever to the urgency of sharing knowledge and resources to fight viral threats and intractable diseases,” said M. Javad Aman, Ph.D., President of IBT.
“We hope that the confluence of Integral Molecular’s protein engineering talent and mechanistic insights from IBT’s antibodies will advance a vaccine that eradicates future threats from this deadly virus,” he added.
Hundreds of antibodies, viral proteins, and transgenes have been successfully optimized for affinity, activity, and specificity using Integral Molecular’s GeneCanvas protein engineering platform.