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  • AutorenbildJuergen Mairhofer

enGenes Biotech joins TU Munich to study cost-effective protein purification by magnetic nanoparticles

Vienna, Austria: – Scientists from recombinant proteins specialist CDMO enGenes Biotech GmbH (enGenes) have co-authored a new study that has pioneered a new method for low-cost proteins production using specific peptide tags and bare magnetic ferric nanoparticles.

The study was an academic collaboration between teams from the Bioseparation Engineering Group at the School of Engineering and Design, Technical University of Munich (TUM), represented by Prof. Sonja Berensmeier, and enGenes Biotech, represented by CEO Dr. Juergen Mairhofer and research scientist Dr. Patrick Stargardt. Lead author was Alexander Zanker, PhD candidate at TUM.

Their peer-reviewed research article is now published in the Biotechnology Journal under the title ‘Direct capture and selective elution of a secreted polyglutamate-tagged nanobody using bare magnetic nanoparticles’.

Confronting upstream protein production problems

The research effort was inspired by upstream difficulties being experienced by the biotech industry in low yields and intracellular product location. The team saw an opportunity to combine two innovative technologies: the method developed by the Technical University of Munich of boosting protein purification by using specific peptide tags and bare magnetic ferric nanoparticles and the potential of the enGenes-eXpress® growth-decoupled Escherichia coli-based expression and production platform to deliver high yields and protein secretion to the extracellular medium (EM).

The researchers saw secretion and direct capture of proteins from the extracellular medium as a promising approach for purification, thus enabling integrated bioprocesses. They succeeded in demonstrating the secretion of a nanobody (VHH) to the EM and its direct capture by using a specific peptide tag and bare, non-functionalized magnetic nanoparticles (MNPs).


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