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Cheaper, better disease treatments expected from faster approach to developing antibodies

changes result in slightly altered antibodies that may attach more strongly to a disease protein. The interaction between the antibody and the disease protein blocks the protein from doing harm in the body, effectively short-cutting a disease process.

Georgiou, who holds the Cockrell Family Regents Chair in Engineering #9, and Chemistry and Biochemistry Professor Brent Iverson, the Warren J. and Viola Mae Raymer Professor and Distinguished Teaching Professor, previously used the antibody evolution process to engineer a similar antibody that is in late-stage, clinical trials to treat human anthrax infections. Iverson is a co-author and a collaborator on the latest research.

To test the bacterium-only system, lead author Yariv Mazor, a postdoctoral student in chemical engineering, engineered antibodies to an anthrax toxin called PA. He and Thomas Van Blarcom, a graduate student in chemical engineering, used a method called APEx, co-developed by Georgiou and Iverson's lab, to identify the bacteria-bound antibodies that attach best to the PA. Van Blarcom then took those bacteria and grew large numbers of them to begin refining the steps needed for mass-scale production of promising therapeutic antibodies.


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Source:University of Texas at Austin


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