Glycosylation definition

Glycosylation plays an important role in oncology and is therefore intensively addressed in immunotherapy. Glycans are involved in different steps of tumor progression, e.g. tumor cell proliferation, invasiveness, metastasis and angiogenesis. Cancer cells show altered glycosylation patterns which emphasizes glycans as interesting therapeutic targets wich can be addressed by a new class of highly specific antibodies, our socalled “GlycoBodies” applicable to wide range of cancers.

Glycotargets are broadly expressed on tumors of different origin including cancer stem cells & metastases but are virtually absent from normal cells. They typically have important biological function in tumor development and progression. Targeting by GlycoBodies bears the advantages of broad indication range, long-term treatment potential and reduced on-target/off tumor toxicities which is key for highly potent therapies. Thereby GlycoBodies are highly suitable for a multi-function platform approach with independent MoAs to provide a tailored therapy format for as many patients as possible.

The pioneer of this concept is our lead antibody Gatipotuzumab (historically PankoMab-GEX®) which is developed as naked antibody in combination trial with anti-EGFR antibodies (GATTO), as unique ADC (worldwide licensing agreement with Daichi Sankyo) as well as in multiple additional formats including bi-specifics e.g. T-cell engagers and immune cytokines in preclinical development.

Importance of Glycosylation

The vast majority of pharmaceutically relevant proteins are glycosylated. Glycosylation plays a key role in many biological processes. Glycosylation patterns vary between species and cell types. Most of the currently marketed biologics are made in non-human cells and therefore carry non-human sugar structures which have a negative effect in terms of the products.
With the combined advantages of optimized sialylation, galactosylation, fucosylation, branching and absence of non-human sugar structures, GEX® products may result in higher efficacy, fewer side effects (incl.immunogenicity), increased bioavailability and/or broader coverage of patients and indications.
Parameters Potential areas of improvement
Sialylation Bioactivity, bioavailability, immunogenicity
Fucosylation Bioactivity, e.g. enhanced anti-tumor activity, ADCC
Galactosylation Bioactivity, e.g. enhanced anti-tumor activity, ADCC, bioavailability
Bisecting GlcNAc / Branching Bioactivity, bioavailability
Fully human glycosylation Bioactivity, bioavailability, immunogenicity, adverse side effects

GlycoExpress® toolbox of glyco-engineered proprietary human cell lines for fast & high yield expression of higher active antibodies & glycoprotein biopharmaceuticals

GlycoExpress® and GEX® is an expression platform for expression of a variety of different biopharmaceuticals with fully human glycosylation. Additionally the technology allows the optimization of glycosylation to improve activity and/or other properties like bioavailability, stability, and/or immunogenicity for better clinical performance.

It is based on proprietary human cell lines generated by glyco-engineering and biotechnologically, optimized for both product optimization and fast, high reproducible and high yield glycoprotein production.

Glycotope GEX® technology provides an expression technology platform proven for:

  • Antibodies of different isotypes (e.g IgG1,IgG2, IgM, IgA)
  • Defucoslyated antibodies
  • Bispecific antibodies
  • Complex glycosylated antibodies
  • Blood-factors
  • Protein hormones
  • Enzymes
  • Scaffolds

If you like to find out more about how these human cell line expression system could enhance your own pipeline please go to Cell Line Development.