AscentGene signs Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with National Cancer Institute

AscentGene, Inc., a leading biotechnology company specializing in cell line development and services, has signed a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA) with the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Laboratory of Molecular Biology for the production of anti-CD25 immunotoxins in AscentGene’s proprietary AG-CHO™ cells. By using AscentGene’s cell lines to produce this immunotoxin, purification and yield of the immunotoxin protein should see improvement from LMB’s current method of protein production.

The immunotoxins produced by LMB at the NCI are typically composed of an antibody variable fragment (Fv) directed against a cancer target that is fused to a truncated Pseudomonas exotoxin A (PE38). LMB leading by Dr. Ira Pastan, an NIH distinguished investigator and Dr. David Fitzgerald, has been producing numerous immunotoxins for the treatment of cancer. All these immunotoxins, however, must be produced in E. coli as insoluble proteins. These proteins need to be renatured and purified away from E. coli contaminants, which are very expensive and laborious. The reduction of cost and labor in the purification steps for producing these proteins is the focus of this CRADA.

AscentGene will use its proprietary AG-CHO™ cell line to produce the anti-CD25 immunotoxins. Because of the mutations of AG-CHO™, the cell line is protected from toxin-induced cell death and able to produce and secrete active immunotoxins into medium. With this approach, there is no need to renature the protein or remove endotoxins, making purification easier and less costly, as well as improving protein yields and activity. The LMB will use these immunotoxins in testing its activity in cell lines and animal models. The results of this CRADA will aid the LMB in defining the therapeutic application of its immunotoxins, possibly paving the way for newer and more efficient eradication of targeted cells.

About AscentGene, Inc.
AscentGene provides high-quality products and services to the life sciences community using innovative technologies and a highly experienced team of scientists. AscentGene’s cell line service is perfect for expressing engineered antibodies, proteins, and enzymes for research, drug development, and other medical applications. Using highly expressive vectors and innovative selection methods, AscentGene can insure a working stable cell line in the shortest time possible. AscentGene also provides a complete protein service, ranging from subcloning and protein expression to protein purification and protein assays.