Businesswire | August 22, 2023
NanoString Technologies, Inc. a leading provider of life science tools for discovery and translational research,
The seminal research led by Alexander Loupy, MD, Ph.D., in cooperation with a global medical team, unravels the complex molecular characteristics of antibody-mediated rejection following the first and second-ever pig-to-human kidney transplants that occurred in 2021 at NYU Langone Transplant Institute. In an accompanying Lancet commentary, scientists praised the team “for laying the foundation for deeper assessment of xenoimmunology and establishing immunological research pathways to advance xenotransplantation.” They also commented on the importance of “state-of-the-art spatial techniques” to decipher transcriptional immune activation.
“We gained vital data and, for the first time ever, we were able to see what is happening immunologically in defined regions of the tissue,” said Dr. Loupy. “This data, enabled by NanoString’s platforms and an Allo - Xeno gene expression repository, allowed us to understand both the similarities and the novel aspects underpinning organ rejection in xenograft transplantation compared to human organ transplantation. NanoString’s nCounter and GeoMx instruments harmonized to create a holistic view of the immune response.” Researchers from the Paris Institute for Transplantation and Organ Regeneration, University of Paris, France’s National Institute of Health and Medical Research contributed to the study.
Xenotransplantation, the process of transplanting organs from animals to humans, is a crucial area of research dedicated to addressing the profound shortage of healthy human organs available for transplant patients. The groundbreaking experimental transplant surgeries performed by Dr. Robert Montgomery at NYU since 2021 involve patients in a state of brain death. Their families and ethical committees have consented to artificially maintain blood circulation during the transplants to advance scientific knowledge on xenotransplantation with the hope of offering more healthy organs for future patients.
The research team, including co-first authors of The Lancet study, Dr. Valentin Goutaudier and Dr. Alessia Giarraputto characterized the human immune response to the porcine kidney using bulk tissue transcriptome profiling on the nCounter Analysis System. Scientists used the nCounter Human Organ Transplant Panel, a process NanoString developed with the Banff International Classification Consortium. It is used by nearly one hundred global research institutions. The panel was adapted to xenotransplants by using bioinformatics-based pig and human gene sequences with homologies alignment. This analysis revealed a molecular architecture of antibody-mediated rejection, including interferon-gamma response, endothelial activation, macrophage activation, and injury repair response in the xenografts.
The GeoMx Digital Spatial Profiler was used next to isolate the immune response to specific regions of the kidney. The GeoMx Whole Transcriptome Assay revealed that antibody-mediated injury was mainly located in the glomeruli of xenografts, with significant enrichment of transcripts associated with monocytes, macrophages, neutrophils, and NK cells.
Drs. Loupy and Montgomery say their findings represent a treasure trove of new information for optimizing genetically modified pig models that may be useful in developing more advanced immunosuppressive treatments for future recipients of xenografts.
“An estimated 100,000 people are waiting for organ transplants in the United States. Thousands die on the wait list. Numbers like these drive us at NanoString to provide researchers with the tools they need to find innovative solutions to solve extraordinary medical challenges,” commented Brad Gray, President and CEO of NanoString. “We congratulate Dr. Loupy and his extended team on their findings and celebrate the on-going successful studies in humans.”
About NanoString Technologies, Inc.
NanoString Technologies, is a leader in spatial biology, offers an ecosystem of innovative discovery and translational research solutions, empowering our customers to map the universe of biology. The GeoMx® Digital Spatial Profiler is a flexible and consistent solution combining the power of whole tissue imaging with gene expression and protein data for spatial whole transcriptomics and proteomics. The CosMx™ Spatial Molecular Imager is a single-cell imaging platform powered by spatial multiomics enabling researchers to map single cells in their native environments to extract deep biological insights and novel discoveries from one experiment. The AtoMx™ Spatial Informatics Platform is a cloud-based informatics solution with advanced analytics and global collaboration capabilities, enabling powerful spatial biology insights anytime, anywhere. At the foundation of our research tools is our nCounter® Analysis System, which offers a secure way to easily profile the expression of hundreds of genes, proteins, miRNAs, or copy number variations, simultaneously with high sensitivity and precision.
Cell and Gene Therapy, MedTech
globenewswire | August 29, 2023
NKGen Biotech, Inc. a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative autologous, allogeneic, and CAR-NK natural killer (“NK”) cell therapies, today announced the first patient has been dosed in a Phase I, multi-center, open-label, dose-escalation study evaluating its cryopreserved investigational allogeneic blood-derived NK cell therapy (“SNK02”). In October 2022, the Food and Drug Administration allowed NKGen’s Phase I SNK02 clinical trial to proceed per its Investigational New Drug application. NKGen previously announced a proposed business combination with Graf Acquisition Corp. IV (NYSE: GFOR.U, GFOR, GFOR.WS).
This Phase I clinical trial is evaluating the safety and tolerability of SNK02 in participants with pathologically confirmed solid tumors refractory to standard of care therapy. The study drug, SNK02, will be administered as an intravenous infusion, weekly for eight weeks. SNK02 consists of NK cells isolated from healthy donor peripheral blood mononuclear cells. NKGen’s proprietary allogeneic manufacturing process is technically capable of producing hundreds of thousands of potential doses of NK cell therapies from materials collected from a single donor. Processed SNK02 cells are expected to possess 99% purity and very high receptor expression rates. Its cryopreservation process allows the Company to maintain significant cytotoxicity, potentially making SNK02 an accessible investigational off-the-shelf candidate for clinical trials treating malignancies with an emphasis on solid tumors.
“We are excited to have dosed our first patient in the Phase I SNK02 clinical trial in refractory cancer patients with limited treatment options,” said Paul Y. Song, M.D., CEO of NKGen. “SNK02 seeks to be one of the first cryopreserved allogeneic NK cell therapy for solid tumors that does not require lymphodepletion before administration. We believe the lack of lymphodepletion has the potential to better preserve the already fragile immune function of heavily pre-treated cancer patients with advanced disease. If successful, this therapy may lead to better overall synergy in future combination regimens with immune checkpoint inhibitors where a robust T-cell response is needed.”
NKGen is a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of innovative autologous, allogeneic, and CAR-NK natural killer cell therapies. NKGen is headquartered in Santa Ana, California, USA.
About Graf Acquisition Corp. IV (“Graf”)
Graf is a blank-check company incorporated as a Delaware corporation and formed for the purpose of effecting a merger, capital stock exchange, asset acquisition, stock purchase, reorganization, or similar business combination with one or more businesses.
businesswire | September 21, 2023
AbCellera announced that it has expanded its existing multi-target collaboration with Regeneron to discover therapeutic antibodies for up to eight targets selected by Regeneron, increased from the original four.
“Having successfully delivered on two challenging discovery campaigns under the original agreement, we are excited to expand the scope of our collaboration with Regeneron to include up to four additional targets,” said Carl Hansen, Ph.D., founder and CEO of AbCellera. “We look forward to using our antibody discovery and development engine to bolster Regeneron’s preclinical portfolio and help identify promising candidates for their programs.”
The collaboration, which began in March 2020, leverages AbCellera’s antibody discovery engine and Regeneron’s VelocImmune® mice to identify novel therapeutic antibodies. AbCellera has initiated programs for all four of the original targets, with Regeneron exercising its rights to advance antibody candidates into further preclinical development for the two programs that have been completed.
Under the terms of the agreement, Regeneron has the right to develop and commercialize therapeutic antibodies resulting from the collaboration. AbCellera receives research payments and is eligible to receive downstream clinical and regulatory milestone payments and royalties on net sales of products.
About AbCellera Biologics Inc.
AbCellera is breaking the barriers of conventional antibody drug discovery to bring better medicines to patients, sooner. AbCellera’s engine integrates expert teams, technology, and facilities with the data science and automation needed to propel antibody-based medicines from target to clinic in nearly every therapeutic area with precision and speed. AbCellera provides innovative biotechs and leading pharmaceutical companies with a competitive advantage that empowers them to move quickly, reduce cost, and tackle the toughest problems in drug development.