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Towards maximum acceleration of monoclonal antibody development: Leveraging transposase-mediated cell line generation to enable GMP manufacturing within 3 months using a stable pool

Journal of Biotechnology
May 23, 2022

In recent years, acceleration of development timelines has become a major focus within the biopharmaceutical industry to bring innovative therapies faster to patients. However, in order to address a high unmet medical need even faster further acceleration potential has to be identified to transform “speed-to-clinic” concepts into “warp-speed” development programs. Recombinant Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cell lines are the predominant expression system for monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) and are routinely generated by random transgene integration (RTI) of the genetic information into the host cell genome. This process, however, exhibits considerable challenges such as the requirement for a time-consuming clone screening process to identify a suitable clonally derived manufacturing cell line. Hence, RTI represents an error prone and tedious method leading to long development timelines until availability of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP)-grade drug substance (DS). Transposase-mediated semi-targeted transgene integration (STI) has been recently identified as a promising alternative to RTI as it allows for a more rapid generation of highperforming and stable production cell lines. In this report, we demonstrate how a STI technology was leveraged to develop a very robust DS manufacturing process based on a stable pool cell line at unprecedented pace. Application of the novel strategy resulted in the manufacturing of GMP-grade DS at 2,000 L scale in less than three months paving the way for a start of Phase I clinical trials only six months after transfection. Finally, using a clonally derived production cell line, which was established from the parental stable pool, we were able to successfully implement a process with an increased mAb titer of up to 5 g per liter at the envisioned commercial scale (12,000 L) within eight months.

Genedata Selector® was used to perform sequence variance analysis via RNA sequencing as a part of genetic characterization of CHO cell line clones.