Fargo, ND-based Agathos Biologics launched its recombinant adeno-associated virus (rAAV) production service using the company’s proprietary cell line, AE1-BHK. Agathos recorded its first sale of rAAV to Genovac, a CRO and CMO.

Agathos produced rAAV with a transgene sequence provided by Genovac in AE1-BHK using transfection with three plasmids (triple transfection), a process that has been much used with the HEK293 cell line. The AE1-BHK cell line was developed by stable transfection of the BHK-21 (C-13) cell line with the adenoviral E1 gene.

“The launch of our custom rAAV service and the first sale of rAAV made using our AE1-BHK cell line is a significant milestone for the company,” said James Brown, CEO and co-founder of Agathos Biologics. “To our knowledge, this is the first sale of rAAV produced using triple transfection in a cell line other than HEK293.

Expression cassette

“For our custom services, we will assist clients in the design of a rAAV expression cassette that contains their gene of interest and produce the rAAV for research use both in vitro and in vivo. In addition to our custom rAAV service, we are providing samples of AE1-BHK, a polyclonal line, free of charge.”

“We look forward to using Agathos’ rAAV as part of our efforts to generate diverse antibody candidates in support of our clients’ research and development needs,” added Brian Walters, CEO of Genovac. “We will also be receiving samples of AE1-BHK for evaluation of its use in recombinant antibody and protein production.”

Agathos is working with multiple collaborators on various aspects of AE1-BHK development.

“We continue to develop AE1-BHK as part of our efforts to improve biomanufacturing and continued ethical issues regarding cell lines derived from aborted fetal tissue like HEK293,” pointed out Brown. “Gene therapy is having a positive impact on addressing unmet medical needs and has only begun to realize its potential. We will engage with others in the industry who share our mission to expand access to these novel treatments through improved manufacturing materials and methods.”

Agathos first presented data on AE1-BHK in a poster session at the ASGCT 2023 Annual Meeting (designated BHK-[wt E1] in the poster).

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