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Collaboration tests technology for scaling Exosome production

Jan 05 2023

Bio-chromatography company Sartorius BIA Separations (Ajdovšcina, Slovenia) and Exopharm Ltd  (Melbourne) have signed a Material Transfer Agreement and associated collaborative programme aiming to combine the Australian company’s LEAP technology with Convective Interaction Media (CIM) monolith chromatography for improved large-scale therapeutic exosome production and commercialisation.

Acting as a carrier for the LEAP ligands, the CIM monolith chromatography columns enable high-throughput with controlled exposure of the bioprocess material allowing the ligands to ‘gently pull out’ exosomes with a high degree of efficiency; a combination with potential for large-scale, high-efficiency purification of therapeutic exosomes.

 Genetic medicines, such as mRNA, require a drug-delivery chassis and exosomes are emerging as an effective, non-viral carrier for additive gene therapy, CRISPR gene editing, etc. RNA can be loaded into exosomes to make therapeutic products that could one-day address many medical problems. Exosomes offer advantages over some other nanoparticle delivery technologies, such as being non-toxic and efficiency at delivering RNA cargoes into cells without eliciting an immune response, which has been of major concern in some early clinical studies1. They can also be engineered to provide specific delivery as well as repeated dosing.

BIA and Exopharm expect to have the results from this testing programme early in 2023, after which plans could potentially be made for commercialisation.

Dr Aleš Strancar, co-founder and managing director of BIA, said “BIA sees the potential in exosomes for new and innovative therapeutic applications and understands that purification of exosomes has held back their adoption as a non-viral drug-delivery technology. We believe that BIA’s CIM monolith technology and Exopharm’s exosome-specific LEAP ligands can work synergistically together to enhance specificity, efficiency and capacity of industrial exosome purification processes. This work with Exopharm has the potential to be a game-changer in the emerging exosome field.”

Dr Ian Dixon, founder and CEO of Exopharm, commented “BIA’s CIM columns are ideally suited as the carrier of Exopharm’s LEAP ligands as they are already used in the industry for large-scale and efficient bioprocessing. The combination of LEAP ligands, together with CIM monolithic columns for large scale exosome purification will be tested over the next few months, after which we can begin to explore how best to bring this exciting new technology into applications.”

More information online

1 Rohner et al 2022 https://doi.org/10.1038/s41587-022-01491-z

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