WuXi PharmaTech has signed an agreement with US-based transgenic-animal specialist Open Monoclonal Technology (OMT) that enables WuXi to generate fully human therapeutic-antibody candidates for its biopharmaceutical clients.

Under the agreement, WuXi will use OMT's OmniRat technology to develop therapeutic-antibody candidates for commercialisation by its global clients.

The research and development outsourcing company, which has operations in China and the US, is investing heavily in building capability and capacity in biologics services. These are expected to be a key driver of revenue growth in years to come.

Great specificity

OmniRat is a fully human monoclonal-antibody platform based on transgenic rats. As the new partners noted, the technology generates these antibodies with “great specificity, affinity and manufacturability”.

In doing so, it eliminates the need for time-consuming humanisation of traditional mouse-derived antibodies and for optimisation of lead candidates using phage display technology, they added.

Important initiative

“Providing discovery, development and manufacturing services for novel therapeutic antibodies represents an important new global business initiative for WuXi,” said chief operating officer and chief financial officer Edward Hu. 

For OMT, commented founder and chief executive officer Dr Roland Buelow, the collaboration further advances the company’s efforts to deploy its human antibody platform on a global scale.