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Horizon and ATUM combine tech to offer stable cell line production

Dan Stanton

By Dan Stanton+

02-Jun-2017

Horizon and ATUM combine tech to offer stable cell line production

Horizon Discovery will add vector and transposase technology to its gene editing services through a cross-licensing partnership with gene and protein expression services firm ATUM.

The agreement sees Cambridge, UK-based translational genomics firm Horizon combine ATUM’s vector suite on an exclusive basis with its CHO SOURCE platform to bolster its cell line solution offering.

“The vectors are designed to provide stringent selection through modification of the promoter driving GS expression. This will ensure that only the very highest expressors will survive selection,” Jamie Freeman, Horizon's product manager of Bioproduction told Biopharma-Reporter.

“The vectors are also designed for ease of use, with the expression of both heavy and light chains possible from the one vector using standard cloning techniques.”

Financial details were not divulged, but we were told Horizon customers will benefit from the vectors included in the commercial use terms with Horizon’s GS knockout CHO K1 cells to allow the rapid identification of high expressing clones.

“This is also compatible with ATUM's Leap-In transposase technology, which can be provided for evaluation in parallel with the CHO SOURCE platform, although commercial use of this technology will require a separate license from ATUM.”

The firm is targeting new customers including big pharma, small pharma and CMOs with the combined technology.

“[Customers] will benefit from accessing this high quality cell line and vector combination to improve biotherapeutic yields as part of their manufacturing process.”

The deal also sees California-based ATUM license the CHO SOURCE platform, including the Glutamine Synthetase (GS) Knock-Out CHO K1 (Chinese hamster ovary) line, for use with its Leap-In Transposase Technology to offer cell line development services.

Transposases are genetic element that can jump from place-to-place on the chromosome using an enzyme called transposase. ATUM has engineered two of these transposases to be more efficient, or as co-founder Claes Gustafsson told this publication in April, “to jump faster – making more copies while still retaining the genes in the transposon in unscrambled order.”

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