Indigenous agriculture has potential to contribute to food needs under climate change

Phys.org | February 26, 2019

The State of Hawaii, like many municipalities across the globe, aims to increase its food self-sufficiency, with a target of 30% of its food produced locally by 2020. Increasing temperatures and changes in precipitation are already occurring locally and globally, and plans to meet food self-sufficiency goals must consider how climate change will affect agricultural viability. Researchers from Kamehameha Schools, the University of Hawaii at Manoa (UH Manoa) and the United States Geological Survey (USGS) have published a study in the journal Nature Sustainability highlighting the large role indigenous agriculture can play in producing food while supporting biodiversity and indigenous well-being in Hawaii under intense land use and climate changes. The researchers of the study focused on the archipelago of Hawaii, where development pressure, rates of food importation and threats to unique native species are among the highest in the world. Furthermore, climate change impacts are expected to increase risks to communities in isolated regions like the Pacific, heightening the necessity of resilient, locally-produced food and community-based solutions.

Spotlight

San Diego's CW6-TV reporter Jenny Hammill conducts a live interview with MiraCosta instructor Mike Fino in the college's biotech lab.

Spotlight

San Diego's CW6-TV reporter Jenny Hammill conducts a live interview with MiraCosta instructor Mike Fino in the college's biotech lab.

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Kaneka Eurogentec Announces the Successful Production of 25g of mRNA in One Batch

Kaneka Eurogentec | February 23, 2022

Kaneka Eurogentec, an FDA inspected contract development and manufacturing organization announced today that its mRNA manufacturing facility has successfully produced a 25 g batch of mRNA for a US customer. Eurogentec’s GMP mRNA manufacturing service offers in vitro transcription (IVT), purification, quality control and batch release of GMP material up to 25 g scale in its current facility in Belgium. In this project Eurogentec successfully produced and purified 25 g of material in one batch that will be tested by the customer. This quantity is equivalent to 100,000’s to millions of doses of mRNA, potentially sufficient for late clinical and commercial uses. Ingrid Dheur, Vice President Biopharma Development at Kaneka Eurogentec stated, “This successful production confirms our ability to produce mRNA at large scale and with a quantity and purity level that exceeds the targets requested by the customer.” “The rapid growth in cell and gene therapy products is driving the need for plasmid DNA and mRNA production. Our existing pharma and biotech customers have already expressed the need for such large-scale manufacturing capabilities, and we have developed methods to respond to these needs. Additionally, we are currently in the planning stages for a 2nd manufacturing facility to further expand our GMP mRNA manufacturing offering”. Lieven Janssens, President and CEO at Kaneka Eurogentec About mRNA Messenger RNA (mRNA) is a molecule that encodes for a protein which will have a beneficial effect in patients. Rather than producing complex proteins, producing mRNA is a convenient way to deliver the protein as a precursor. The production of mRNA is much simpler than producing a recombinant protein and thus mRNA molecules have the advantage of enabling a shorter production time to clinic. For example, current mainstream therapies for the protection against COV-SARS-2 infections are based on mRNA and have been developed in record time. The success of these COVID-19 mRNA vaccines has opened the evaluation of mRNA for other infectious diseases, for example influenza or HIV, and the need for custom large-scale production of GMP mRNA. About Kaneka Eurogentec Eurogentec was founded in 1985 as one of the first biotech companies in Belgium. Kaneka Eurogentec contributes to improving health and fighting diseases by supplying products and services to scientists involved in life science research, molecular diagnostics, and therapeutic developments. The Liège-based company is recognized as one of the major suppliers in the field of genomics and proteomics as well as a trusted Contract Development and Manufacturing Organization (CDMO) for the bio-production of pharmaceuticals. Eurogentec is one of a few CDMOs capable of manufacturing GMP oligonucleotides, mRNA, plasmid DNA and recombinant proteins for human injectable use, with commercial products sold in USA, Europe and Japan. In 2010, Eurogentec, renamed Kaneka Eurogentec in April 2017, became part of Kaneka Corporation, a large Japanese chemical company focusing on technology and innovation. About Kaneka Corporation Kaneka is an innovation-oriented chemical company. Traditionally the company has been active in polymers, fermentation, biotechnology, and electronics, as well as other fields. Business activities now span a broad spectrum of markets ranging from plastics, EPS resins, chemicals and foodstuffs to pharmaceuticals, medical devices, electrical and electronic materials, and synthetic fibers. The life science related activities are currently one of the strategically important domains for Kaneka. The company has been a pioneer among Japanese chemical companies in establishing overseas operations, beginning in 1970 with a subsidiary in Belgium.

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AI

Viva Biotech and BioMap Have Signed a Strategic Collaboration Agreement to Accelerate Early Drug Discovery Using AI Technology

Viva Biotech, BioMap | May 11, 2021

The first generation of the China Biocomputing Conference, hosted by BioMap and Adock, was successfully launched in Suzhou. The conference's goal is to bring together biotech and IT industry partners to build a multi-party integrated industrial ecosystem and realize AI's full potential in the field of biotechnology. Viva Biotech was invited to the conference and announced a strategic alliance with BioMap. This alliance will combine BioMap's AI + biological computing engine with Viva Biotech's structure-based drug discovery tool to jointly accelerate the R&D of novel drugs. Viva Biotech's President, Dr. Delin Ren, stated: "The combination of AI deep learning technologies and the SBDD technology platform is certain to have far-reaching consequences for drug design and R&D. The strategic partnership between Viva Biotech and BioMap is the ideal combination between these two technologies. It is anticipated that it will shorten the R&D period and increase the success rate of novel drug discovery." "High-quality biological data is the base of biocomputing platform development," said Liu Wei, co-founder, and CEO of BioMap. Viva Biotech has the most advanced protein structure analysis technologies and capabilities in the world. The partnership with Viva Biotech will allow BioMap to obtain high-quality macromolecular structure data in a high-throughput manner, especially for new targets, artificially designed antibody molecules, and target-drug complexes. The partnership, when combined with BioMap's strong computing power and algorithm development expertise, is expected to facilitate the development of BioMap's AI macromolecular drug platform, which will potentially lead to new drug development." AlxplorerBio and EPN, two biotech firms that Viva BioInnovator funded in and incubated, both attended the meeting and signed the collaboration agreement. About Viva Biotech Viva Biotech aims to become a place for innovative biotechnology companies from around the world. We have built a scalable business model that combines the conventional cash-for-service (CFS) model with the revolutionary equity-for-service (EFS) model. Under the CFS model, the Group offers global pharmaceutical clients a one-stop-shop for new drug discovery and production. The EFS business is committed to investing globally in biotech research that provides novel solutions to unmet medical needs in a variety of therapeutic areas. Viva Biotech has offered drug development and manufacturing services to 1,252 pharmaceutical clients worldwide as of December 31, 2020, worked on over 1,500 independent drug targets, delivered over 21,000 independent protein structures, and incubated/invested in 67 biotech firms. About BioMap BioMap is China's first biocomputing-driven biotech firm, led as chairman by Baidu CEO Robin Li and co-founder and CEO by Baidu Ventures' former CEO Liu Wei. BioMap was established during a period of growth in biological data. Our goal is to use AI and data to significantly improve the lives of patients. BioMap, positioned as a data-driven company, is speeding the R&D phase of early screening/diagnosis, drug discovery, and other precision medicine products by leveraging high-performance biocomputing and AI capabilities, gaining insights from our unique and vast library of population and molecular data sets. We are concentrating our efforts on developing our internal AI engine and data collection capabilities to curate our proprietary insights for difficult diseases.

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RESEARCH

AlivaMab Discovery Services is Expanding the Drug Discovery Platform with the Introduction of New Antibody Engineering Department

AlivaMab | May 13, 2021

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