UCOEs, or Ubiquitous Chromatin Opening Elements, are delivery vectors used to insert genetic information into cell lines being developed for biomanufacturing applications.
According to Millipore, the inserts produce stable cells that express the gene of interest at higher levels than are achieved by other transfection methods which, the US firm claims, makes it easier to select the most productive clones, thereby reducing development time.
Under the new deal, UK-based Biodesign will use the UCOE technology to create mammalian cell lines for its customers, which according to process development manager David Simpson, is one of the firm’s core strengths.
Dr Simpson told outsourcing-pharma that: “[Eden] has considerable technical expertise in both the development of the UCOE elements and, through its own in-house strategies, has developed a platform fermentation process enabling the expedition of our client’s products to the clinic.
“This coupled with the UCOE’s inherent boost to both expression levels and stability has enabled a major step change for both our clients and Biodesign in terms of delivery.”
The technology’s benefits were also stressed by Millipore’s VP of Upstream processing Andrew Bulpin, who said that it “revolutionizes” the speed with which protein therapeutics can be produced in mammalian cells.
He added that “We are pleased to collaborate with Eden Biodesign the complex mammalian cell line development area and have high expectations for ongoing success of this partnership.”
Boost for Watson
Biodesign’s strength in biologics manufacturing was also highlighted as a key driver for Watson Pharmaceuticals acquisition of the UK CMO earlier this year.
Speaking at the time Watson CEO Paul Bisaro said that: "Completing the acquisition of Eden is the next strategic step in our commitment to establishing a major position in biologic products on a global basis.”
It therefore seems likely that Watson one of the key beneficiaries of Biodesign’s partnership with Millipore.