Initial development of biosimilar immune checkpoint blockers using HEK293 cells

June 29, 2020


Initial development of biosimilar immune checkpoint blockers using HEK293 cells




Protein Expression and Purification


Antibodies that block interaction of immune checkpoint receptors with its ligands have revolutionized the treatment of several cancers. Despite the success of this approach, the high cost has been restricted the use of this class of drugs. In this context, the development of biosimilar can be an important strategy for reducing prices and expanding access after patent has been dropped. Here, we evaluated the use of HEK293 cells for transient expression of an immune checkpoint-blocking antibody as a first step for biosimilar development. Antibody light and heavy chain genes were cloned into pCI-neo vector and transiently expressed in HEK293 cells. The culture supernatant was then subjected to protein A affinity chromatography, which allowed to obtain the antibody with high homogeneity. For physicochemical comparability, biosimilar antibody and reference drug were analyzed by SDS-PAGE, isoelectric focusing, circular dichroism and fluorescence spectroscopy. The results indicated that the both antibodies have a high degree of structural similarity. Lastly, the biosimilar antibody binding capacity to target receptor was shown to be similar to reference product in ELISA and flow cytometry assays. These data demonstrate that the HEK293 system can be used as an important tool for candidate selection and early development of biosimilar antibodies.


J-815, FP-6500


Circular dichroism, Secondary structure, Fluorescence, Protein structure, Antibodies, Biochemistry