The US biomanufacturing technology firm, and partners Pfenex, BioPharm Services and deltaDOT, were able to produce purified “swine flu” H1 hemagglutinin just 42 days starting with the protein’s amino acid sequence.
The project combined Xcellerex’ microbial PDMax process development and FlexFactory technology with expression, analysis and data modelling platforms to create a rapid-response vaccine production platform.
Company chief technology officer Parrish Galliher said that: “We are very pleased with the results of the test, which demonstrated the performance of rapid, flexible, and portable biomanufacturing.”
Galliher added that: “The results exceeded our expectations and we thank Pfenex, deltaDOT and BioPharm Services for their teamwork to achieve these outstanding results.”
The co-developed production platform, which Xcellerex said bettered "the goal for rate of production by at least 10 fold and exceeded all product quality specifications," has obvious application in the production of vaccines in the event of another influenza pandemic.
This point was stressed by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and Defense Threat Reduction Agency’s Transformational Medical Technologies Initiative (TMTI), which co-funded the work.
“The test demonstrated the speed and capability of the platform in producing a real-world vaccine, in this case swine flu H1 within 12 weeks of receipt of an unknown target amino acid sequence.
“The team succeeded in developing a strain and bioprocess, and fully characterizing the purified product in less than six weeks and at a cost, that scaled to manufacturing would be less than $0.50 per dose.”