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BAC Extends Partnership with GE Healthcare to Launch Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Select

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BAC BV has extended its collaboration with GE Healthcare with the addition of a new bioprocess affinity chromatography ligand to GE Healthcare’s range of custom designed media.

The latest addition to the range is an affinity resin for the purification of alpha-1 antitrypsin (AAT) from blood plasma, recombinant cell culture or transgenic sources. The new resin has been developed as part of GE Healthcare’s Custom Designed Media (CDM) programme and provides a new solution for AAT purification in the biopharmaceutical industry.

AAT deficiency is a common genetic disorder thought to affect approximately 200,000 people in North America and Europe, although it is believed that 95% of patients remain undiagnosed. AAT is a protease inhibitor that protects body fluids and tissues from the body’s own protease enzymes, and a deficiency can lead to emphysema, COPD, or in some cases, liver damage.

AAT deficiency can be treated by supplementing patients’ AAT levels. Plasma-derived AAT therapeutics on the market include Prolastin (Talecris), Aralast (Baxter) and Zemaira (CSL Behring), and there are a number of recombinant products in development.

With the current AAT therapy market being underserved by a shortage of AAT supply BAC hopes that its AAT affinity ligand, developed as part of BAC’s CaptureSelect® range, will provide manufacturers with a more streamlined and higher yielding purification option.

The provision of custom ligands is one of BAC’s core businesses, with the resulting ligands feeding into its growing bioprocess commercial supply business through collaborations with partners such as GE Healthcare.

BAC’s CaptureSelect® ligands offer enhanced stability and specificity compared to traditional affinity ligands, reducing often lengthy purification processes to a single step and resulting in higher throughput, reduced costs and fewer complications during the purification of biotherapeutics. The Alpha-1 Antitrypsin Select ligand provides a highly specific, simple and reliable affinity solution for the purification of this important therapeutic.

Laurens Sierkstra, CEO of BAC, commented: “We now have a wide range of our CaptureSelect ligands available through partnership with GE Healthcare, covering the large-scale purification of proteins, antibodies and viruses. We are delighted to add AAT to the custom designed media range.”

Henrik Ihre, Director of Custom Designed Media at GE Healthcare, commented: “Combining BAC’s know-how in innovative affinity ligand technology with GE Healthcare’s downstream processing expertise, enables us to supply our customers with tailored chromatography media for their specific purification needs. This opens the door for more cost-efficient production of many biotherapeutics, such as AAT.”

In addition to providing affinity products for large scale bioprocessing operations, BAC also works in partnership with biopharmaceutical companies to develop custom ligands for specific purification tasks.