Horizon Discovery CHOSOURCE™ platform supports development of immunotherapy for autoimmune diseases

Cambridge, UK, 22 April 2020: Horizon Discovery Group plc (LSE: HZD) (“Horizon”, “the Company” or “the Group”), a global leader in the application of gene editing and gene modulation for cell line engineering, today announced that its cGMP-compliant CHOSOURCE™ platform has played a key role in generating a stable cell line for the development of an immunotherapy for autoimmune diseases. Horizon’s pharmaceutical-grade, stable Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO) cells delivered high yields of monoclonal antibody for LAG-3 immunotherapy, enabling Immutep and Batavia Biosciences to reach an important milestone in the preclinical development of the compound.

Horizon’s gene-edited Glutamine Synthetase (GS) knockout CHO K1 cell line expression system, offered by Batavia Biosciences as part of its STEP®-mAb service, was used to generate a high yielding cell line for Immutep’s IMP761 product candidate, an agonist antibody targeting the immune checkpoint lymphocyte activation gene (LAG)-3. LAG-3 controls the signaling between specific immune cells, T cells and antigen presenting cells, which are responsible for the adaptive immune response, making it a promising focus for novel cancer therapies or for the treatment of autoimmune conditions, such as inflammatory bowel diseases, rheumatoid arthritis, and multiple sclerosis.

Horizon’s well-established GS expression system facilitates the development of stable cell lines for the expression of antibodies and other recombinant proteins and is recognized in the industry and by regulators as suitable for high yield biomanufacturing. Its CHOSOURCE biomanufacturing platform helps companies to move from the DNA sequence of their potential biotherapeutic to clinical manufacturing as simply and rapidly as possible. The platform is versatile and suitable for a broad range of monoclonal antibody therapeutics, delivering higher-than-anticipated yields of less commonly used IgG4-based antibodies, such as IMP761.

Jesús Zurdo, Global Head Bioprocessing, Horizon Discovery, said: “We are very pleased with the excellent results obtained by Batavia, which further prove the versatility of CHOSOURCE in successfully expressing different types of biopharmaceuticals. The combination of Horizon’s CHOSOURCE platform with Batavia Biosciences’s STEP technology has enabled the rapid generation of a stable, highly-productive cell line that will help drive the clinical development of Immutep’s promising immunotherapy.”

Terry Pizzie, CEO, Horizon Discovery said: “We are dedicated to ensuring availability of key technologies that can improve affordability of medicines worldwide. Our CHOSOURCE biomanufacturing platform is empowering organizations from early stage start-ups to large pharmaceutical companies to drive efficiencies throughout development and production and has already been utilized in multiple successful innovative new drug filings.”

The complete CHOSOURCE system includes the GS knockout CHO K1 cell line, a comprehensive package of supporting documentation, and an expression vector supplied under license from DNATwoPointO, Inc.

For further information on Horizon’s CHOSOURCE platform, please visit: https://horizondiscovery.com/navigation/cho-cells

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