The company announced Monday that its partner EVQLV submitted its first panel of DNA sequences that may offer potential therapeutic antibodies against the new coronavirus, SARS CoV-2 or COVID-19.
The DNA sequences were generated by EVQLV using computational antibody design, combining mathematics, statistics and computer science to pinpoint high-affinity antibodies.
Antibodies were pre-screened by EVQLV’s artificial intelligence-driven algorithms.
ImmunoPrecise cautioned shareholders that the research is still in its early stages and has not undergone clinical trials. The company said it is not making any implied claim that it has the ability to eliminate the virus at this time.
Even so, Victoria-based ImmunoPrecise said it believes treatments for the novel coronavirus are ideally generated using data from the new strain, which is shown to have a unique sequence that sets it apart from the 2002 SARS-CoV and SARS-related CoVs.
CEO Dr Jennifer Bath called the submission of the first panel of antibody sequences an “important milestone.”
"As new insights into SARS-CoV-2 are captured by researchers around the world, we are applying these insights in an attempt to generate an efficacious and sustainable therapy,” Bath said in a statement.
ImmunoPrecise said it will review the antibody candidates and select around 1,200 candidates to validate at its laboratory facilities. The firm will then screen and test the antibodies, it told shareholders.
“While computational analyses are routine practice in antibody optimization, it is uncommon to run millions of computational antibody designs and breadth of screening calculations performed by EVQLV's artificial intelligence,” the company said in a statement.
The use of EVQLV's technology, in conjunction with IPA's research insights and parameters, generated this first panel of optimized antibody sequences against SARS-CoV-2 in less than one week, according to ImmunoPrecise.
Both ImmunoPrecise and EVQLV will continue to work on additional panels of computationally generated sequence candidates against SARS-CoV-2.
"EVQLV's approach simulates antibody discovery and characterization that occurs in the laboratory and generates candidate sequences which are screened using algorithms seeking desirable attributes," CEO Bath said.
"By computationally generating and screening millions of antibody sequences, the algorithms provide our laboratory teams prospective panels of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody sequences for further validation."
EVQLV develops artificial intelligence, engineered with life science data and biological knowledge, that accelerates the speed at which biologic therapies reach patients.
ImmunoPrecise is a contract research organization specializing in therapeutic antibody discovery for its pharmaceutical clients.
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