Sartorius and Exopharm to develop large-scale exosome tech

Sartorius BIA Separations (BIA) and Exopharm have signed a joint research agreement to address the technical challenges of large-scale exosomes for non-viral drug delivery.

BIA – a chromatography firm acquired by Sartorius in October 2020 for $423 million – will use its Convective Interaction Media (CIM) monolith chromatography alongside Exopharm’s patented LEAP technology to advance large-scale therapeutic exosome production and commercialization.

BIA claims its CIM monolith chromatography columns allow high-throughput, resolution separation, and capacity. Furthermore, the firm says it has significant stability and controlled exposure of the bioprocess material.

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Exopharm’s LEAP ligands work by carefully pulling out exosomes that have a high degree of efficiency and thus could potentially act as a solution for large-scale and high-efficiency purification of therapeutic exosomes.

According to both firms, the Material Transfer Agreement has been signed due to the recognized demand for large-scale purification technology that has the ability to tackle critical issues associated with the production of clinical grade exosomes as delivery mechanisms for gene-based therapeutics.

“BIA sees the potential in exosomes for new and innovative therapeutic applications and understands that purification of exosomes has held back their adoption as a non-viral drug-delivery technology,” said Aleš Strancar, co-founder and managing director of BIA.

“We believe that BIA’s CIM monolith technology and Exopharm’s exosome-specific LEAP ligands can work synergistically together to enhance specificity, efficiency and capacity of industrial exosome purification processes. This work with Exopharm has the potential to be a game-changer in the emerging exosome field.”

Initially, the research between BIA and Exopharm will have specific focus on the assessment and validation of the LEAP ligand chemistry to CIM monolithic columns. The aim of this is that it will advance both specificity and purified exosome purity  in relation to BIA CIM ion exchange columns.

The results are anticipated to be available next year and after this, both company’s say there is potential for it to be made for commercialization.