BioCentriq™, the NJ Innovation Institute’s cell and gene therapy development and manufacturing center and a CDMO, has partnered with Kytopen, a Cambridge-based startup spun out of MIT. The respective teams initially will focus on demonstrating the impact to both autologous and allogeneic cell therapies by integrating Kytopen’s Flowfect® transfection technology with other steps in the manufacturing process.

Flowfect, which “utilizes a novel combination of electrical energy and continuous fluid flow to engineer cells,” according to Bethany Grant, head of research and development at Kytopen, was developed as a flexible, technology solution for non-viral cell engineering that integrates the discovery, development, and manufacturing of cell and gene therapeutics. The platform enables cell engineering without compromising functionality or viability, says Paulo A. Garcia, PhD, CEO and co-founder of Kytopen.

Flowfect transfection system [Kytopen]

“Our goal is to enable simple and efficient non-viral manufacturing of cell therapies in days versus weeks to help patients. Our partnership with BioCentriq accelerates that goal,” he continues.

“We are in the midst of a cell engineering revolution with the emergence of CRISPR as well as transposon technology such as Sleeping Beauty, PiggyBac, TALEN, ZFN and others that is being held back by a lack of viable methods to introduce them into cells at scale” explains Alex Klarer, head of cell therapy for BioCentriq. “As a high-yield cell- transfection method, the [Flowfect] platform is built with GMP manufacturing in mind as it incorporates easily into modular manufacturing processes and utilizes closed and automated techniques.”cell