Sengenics offers COVID-19 antigens for vaccine development

By The Science Advisory Board staff writers

March 13, 2020 -- Sengenics announced that it has COVID-19 antigens available for both research and commercial vaccine development purposes for sale.

The company has successfully developed properly folded and functional COVID-19 antigens using its patented KREX technology. The development of these antigens was expedited by increasing numbers of COVID-19 infections, which are needed to develop vaccines and further characterize the SARS-CoV-2 virus.

The folded structure of a protein antigen is a key component of antibody recognition, according to Jonathan Blackburn, PhD, chief scientific officer of Sengenics, in a statement. A protein's antigenic property is dependent on efficient epitope presentation and subsequent stimulation of B and T cells, he noted.

But since most antibodies are thought to recognize discontinuous epitopes on their target proteins, Blackburn believes it's critical that antigens used in serological assays or presented to B cells for antibody-based vaccine development are in a natively folded form.

"The use of our KREX technology for the production of the SARS-CoV-2 antigens will ensure these antigens are correctly folded, preserving all conformational antibody binding sites, and that they are highly purified, free from bacterial contaminants, ready for downstream applications," Blackburn stated in a press release.

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