In May, TheraCode acquired JPT Peptide Technologies, a wholly owned subsidiary of Jerini. JPT offers peptide-based products and services for vaccine development, immune monitoring, and peptide biomarker discovery. “Our acquisition by TheraCode means that, in addition to continuing our work in the service arena, we will also develop immunodiagnostic and immunotherapeutic products in collaboration with our new parent,” explains Holger Wenschuh, Ph.D., managing director of JPT.
JPT’s high-throughput technology involves a step-wise solid-phase synthesis process, but instead of using traditional resin-based chemistry, flat membranes are used as a solid support.
“We dispense tiny droplets of activated amino acids directly onto the surface of these membranes, and it is these droplets that act as microreactors in which the chemical reactions between the amino acids and the peptides already on the membrane occur,” explains Dr. Wenschuh “The process involves a number of reaction rounds, with each spot on the membrane corresponding to an individual peptide construct and each membrane accommodating up to 2,000 spots.”
The main advantage of this approach is the speed with which large numbers of peptides can be created in parallel, says Dr. Wenschuh. “We can economically generate up to 50,000 peptides in a week as the need for consumables is low. Using our technology, peptide synthesis is several orders of magnitude cheaper than traditional solid-phase approaches,” he adds.
JPT’s core products include PepSpot™ and PepStar™ technologies for peptide arrays, PepMix™ peptide pools, as well as PepTrack™ and SpikeTide™ peptide libraries.
The company’s macro- and microscale peptide sets are complemented by preassembled tools for enzyme profiling such as kinase, phosphatase, and protease peptide microarrays, and peptide microarrays for mapping immunodominant regions in antigens. JPT’s premium synthesis unit generates essential reagents for all phases of vaccine development.
While applications of the high-throughput technology are manifold, JPT says that the company’s main focus is on generating high-content peptide arrays, libraries, pools, and sets of proteotypic peptides for proteomic applications.
“Our high-throughput synthesis technology gives researchers the opportunity to monitor immune responses or quantify protein expression on a proteome-wide basis,” Dr. Wenschuh suggests. “As the application of such technologies in clinical research expands, we are confident that peptide arrays, pools, and libraries that cover, for example, the entire proteome of a pathogen, will have a significant impact on research into personalized medicines and diagnostics.”