IB PRIME COMPETITION (OCTOBER 2018) WINNING PROJECT: INGENZA AND UNIVERSITY OF EDINBURGH

Using a new-chromosome for synthetic biology in Pichia pastoris

We will pump-prime the innovative exploitation of "neo-chromosomes" for performing synthetic biology in the yeast Pichia pastoris, a powerful workhorse for commercial protein production. We shall transfect into P. pastoris a stably self-replicating synthetic chromosome with a DNA sequence tailored to accept precisely positioned insertions of further exogenous genetic material. This would allow, for example, manipulations of all 20 genes needed to endow P. pastoris with the capability to manufacture glycoproteins bearing human-like complex glycans, rather than yeast-specific glycans. In the longer term we will use these cells to bio-manufacture human complement factor H, which is needed for replacement therapy in some patients with age-related macular degeneration. IBioIC already funds a closely related on-going project with similar goals but using traditional methods, and we now propose to extend this on-going project by six months. Success in creating a microbial platform for human glycoprotein production would impact the $10B-therapeutic glycoprotein sector.

Industry Partner: Ingenza

Academic Partner: University of Edinburgh - Paul Barlow

IBioIC Funding: £49,831.00

Total Project Cost: £99,962.00