Faster access to high affinity antibody drug candidates

MorphoSys AG has unveiled a multi-year technology development programme which will lead to a significantly enhanced version of its antibody generation platform.

The new system, which involves several technology components and maintains its modular construction, represents a technological breakthrough in the advancement of antibody library technology and will offer unequalled opportunities for antibody-based drug development. The new technology suite will include enhancements involving substantially faster and more direct access to high affinity antibody drug candidates in the full IgG format compared with other antibody technologies.

In conjunction with the publication of its plans for ongoing technology development, MorphoSys today announced the signing of a licensing agreement with Dyax Corp covering a broad portfolio of antibody-related patents.

MorphoSys has developed several technologies relating to the generation of fully human antibodies, which provide for rapid and direct access to human antibodies as research tools, diagnostics and therapeutics.

At the core of MorphoSys’s technology offering is HuCAL, the Human Combinatorial Antibody Library, a collection of more than 12 billion functional, distinct, fully human antibodies. The new technology platform will comprise an upgrade of MorphoSys’s current antibody library HuCAL GOLD to an enhanced version HuCAL Platinum, as well as established screening and selection methods such as AutoCAL and CysDisplay, the RapMAT technology for faster antibody optimisation, the antigen expression system AgX and the sequence analysis software SAS and additional technology modules currently in development.

­Among a number of innovations in the HuCAL Platinum library, one key step incorporated during its construction was a complete sequence alignment using the latest human genome data for immunoglobulins. The underlying database is four-fold larger than that used for the construction of HuCAL GOLD – the resulting improvement in the library’s composition is expected to lead to even faster generation of high quality human antibodies for human health care.

Dr Marlies Sproll, Chief Scientific Officer of MorphoSys AG, said: “The new technology suite will enable us to significantly shorten selection timelines for therapeutic antibodies by providing direct access to fully human IgG antibodies. It represents a quantum leap forward in the development of our technology which will allow us to further consolidate our technological leadership in the human antibody field. It will be by far the most advanced approach to therapeutic antibody generation seen in the industry to date”.

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