David Wood gets second patent, starts company
After receiving the second of two patents for his breakthrough platform for the purification of recombinant proteins, David Wood has partnered with Izabela Gierach to start Protein Capture Science, LLC. The company is in the very earliest stages of development, but his work to develop highly useful biotechnologies through engineering proteins and enzymes for specific applications is exciting to many people in industry.
Wood, who is becoming widely known for his groundbreaking research in self-cleaving affinity tag technology for the purification of recombinant proteins, recently published the results of his research in Nature Biomedical Engineering.
The technology was largely developed under a DARPA-funded project to develop a laptop-sized "pharmacy in a briefcase," which would deliver a single dose of virtually any protein therapeutic (including insulin) on-site in less than 24 hours. The envisioned micro-factory could completely revolutionize the way biopharmaceuticals are discovered, developed and manufactured. For instance, soldiers in the field could make drugs on demand without the need to carry refrigeration equipment, while clinics could administer customized treatments for their patients on location as needed.
A key component of this micro-factory is Wood’s self-cleaving affinity tag technology, which itself has additional applications ranging from pure research to biopharmaceutical development and manufacturing. To fully realize the potential impact of this method, Wood's company, Protein Capture Science, LLC, will develop, manufacture and directly distribute the technology to a wide variety of potential users.
In May, Wood was featured as an expert in Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN) in the article "Microbial Culture Systems for Bioprocessing," discussing the challenges and choices in microbial production, including type of organism, optimization of medium, and upscaling of production systems. GEN, a leading publication whose breadth of editorial coverage is unrivaled in the biotech industry, has been a key driver in the explosion of the industry.