Glythera and the FDA enter into vaccine research collaboration agreement

The FDA is to assess the feasibility of Glythera technology in developing antigenic glycoproteins as synthetic conjugate vaccines.

Glythera Ltd, a UK based company specialising in developing an improved generation of biological therapeutics through advanced glycosylation technologies will collaborate with the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to assess the feasibility of applying Glythera’s PermaLink™ technology to the generation of synthetic carbohydrate-based conjugate vaccines. The collaboration will examine the potential advantages of using Glythera’s technology (PermaLink) for attaching synthetically made carbohydrate antigens to proteins to improve the production and efficacy of conjugate vaccines being developed by the FDA.

Working with the Centre for Biologics Evaluation and Research at the FDA, Glythera will adapt its patented PermaLink technology to develop new chemistries for the simple and efficient attachment of antigenic carbohydrates, produced synthetically by the FDA, onto carrier proteins.

To date there are a number of difficulties associated with the production of effective carbohydrate-based vaccines. Generating an immune response against carbohydrates is difficult, owing to their inherently ‘T-cell’ independent nature. Classical carbohydrate-based vaccines involve the attachment of a carbohydrate antigen to a protein carrier. The protein carrier enhances presentation of the carbohydrate antigen to the immune system and also helps to activate the specific cells (helper T-cells) required by the body to produce antibodies against the carbohydrates. However, the chemistry used to attach carbohydrate antigens to the carrier protein can have a major impact of the efficacy (potency) of the vaccine, as well as the body’s ability to generate the specific types of long-term ‘memory’ antibodies required for the immune system to provide protection against the disease. Permalink is designed to specifically address these challenges. “We are delighted to enter into this direct collaboration with the FDA” says Anthony Baxter, Chairman of Glythera. “This programme will allow us to demonstrate the versatility of our PermaLink technology for application in this important field of vaccine development”.

About Glythera

Glythera Ltd is a spin-out biotechnology company from the University of Bath, creating an improved generation of biological therapeutics through advanced glycosylation and conjugation technologies. The company has core expertise in protein/peptide functionalisation and glycosylation technologies, to impart improved pharmacokinetic properties such as increased half-life and stability, to a broader range of protein and peptide based therapeutics.