Mogrify, a UK company aiming to transform the development of ex vivo cell therapies and pioneer the field of in vivo reprogramming therapies, and the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology (LMB), a world-class research laboratory dedicated to understanding important biological processes at the molecular level, have announced an exploratory research collaboration. The project aims to develop novel protein expression systems by leveraging recent advances in direct cell reprogramming to help improve the production of proteins which are not produced sufficiently well in existing expression systems.
The Mogrify technology will be applied to predict combinations of transcription factors to induce trans-differentiation from one cell type to another. The resulting target cell types could provide researchers with improved access to important proteins found in human cell types that are difficult to obtain and allow for more efficient protein production.
Mogrify will receive access to any intellectual property and know-how developed during the project, further enabling the commercialisation of the technology in areas of therapeutic value. This collaboration is an expansion of the company’s relationship with the MRC LMB and follows the announcement in December 2020 that it had secured an exclusive license from the MRC LMB to an enhanced version of Mogrify technology enabling more accurate transcription factor predictions and improved cell conversion efficacy. On behalf of the MRC, the medical research charity LifeArc facilitated the exclusive license of the new version of Mogrify’s core reprogramming platform, and jointly negotiated the legal framework to enable a successful collaboration between the MRC and Mogrify.
Julian Gough, PhD, co-founder and CSO, Mogrify & principal investigator, MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology, said: “Protein expression presents a challenge for many research projects as well as bioproduction. This project proposes to solve the problem by taking more readily available cell types and convert them into other cell types which are harder to obtain. The successful outcome of this collaboration could provide researchers with improved access to important but hard-to-get proteins and enable more efficient antibody production methods for biologic drugs. We are excited to embark on this new exploratory research project to deliver a practical solution that could potentially unlock new areas of structural biology and biochemistry.”