The Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania will use the GeneGPS™ technology developed by DNA2.0 primarily to support the Gene Therapy Program’s work on HIV-1 vaccine development by optimizing in vivo protein expression.
Results from the research partnership are likely applicable to a range of gene therapy approaches, according to DNA2.0.
“We have successfully applied GeneGPS technology to optimize expression in a variety of hosts, including bacterial, fungal, plant, and mammalian cell lines,” says Mark Welch, Ph.D., director of gene design for DNA2.0. “We are especially interested in teaming with the Gene Therapy Program at Penn to extend our expertise to in vivo tissues, where cost savings and expression control are critical to the success of gene therapies for some of our most intractable diseases.”
Perelman’s Gene Therapy Program is directed by James M. Wilson, M.D., Ph.D., professor of pathology and laboratory medicine. Dr. Wilson’s program focuses on developing effective gene transfer vectors derived from recombinant viruses, and applying them in the treatment of a variety of acquired and inherited diseases. Much of the program’s current effort is in the development and optimization of new adeno-associated virus vectors.
Dr. Wilson’s vaccine research team is a member of the Collaboration for AIDS Vaccine Discovery (CAVD), an international network of scientists and experts working to design new HIV vaccine candidates, the most promising of which will be advanced to clinical trials. CAVD is funded by grants from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Dr. Wilson is also editor of Human Gene Therapy and two sister publications, Human Gene Therapy: Methods, and Human Gene Therapy: Clinical Development. All are published by GEN publisher Mary Ann Liebert.
Privately held DNA2.0 offers services that include gene design, optimization, synthesis, and cloning, as well as platforms for protein and strain engineering.