A deal for artificial lymph node technology

ProBioGen and TEVA enter into research license deal on tech to assess drug effects on the immune system

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BERLIN—ProBioGen AG, a specialist for contract development and manufacturing of complex glycoproteins, announced in February the signing of a non-exclusive license agreement on its proprietary human Artificial Lymph Node (HuALN) platform technology with TEVA. The unique human Artificial Lymph Node model was developed by ProBioGen to be, as the company puts it, a “superior 3D-micro-organoid model for analyzing substance effects on the human immune system in vitro.”
Under the terms of the agreement, the technology platform will be transferred to TEVA as a predictive tool to assist in the assessment of TEVA’s biopharmaceutical drug candidates.
“With the complex, in-vivo-like human Artificial Lymph Node model we have demonstrated effects which were impossible to see in conventional models, bridging the existing gap between animal models and first-in-man applications,” says ProBioGen’s chief scientific officer Dr. Volker Sandig. “We look forward to this collaboration and the combined expertise on either side to develop the HuALN platform even further.”
HuALN was developed by ProBioGen and is based on a patented, miniaturized and perfused bioreactor for long-term cultivation of immune cells. Human blood-derived dendritic cells, T and B lymphocytes and mesenchymal stem cell-derived stromal cells are inoculated into the bioreactors’ three-dimensional hydrogel matrix, which is perfused with cell culture medium and aerated just as in a real human lymph node, according to ProBioGen. Upon antigen-stimulation, the cells self-organize into immune-competent micro-organoid structures within the 3D matrix. The perfused bioreactor is typically operated for four weeks, and thus allows multiple and repeated expositions of the immune cells to the test compounds.

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