Twist Bioscience Corporation (NASDAQ: TWST), a company enabling customers to succeed through its offering of high-quality synthetic DNA using its silicon platform, today announced a collaboration with Astellas Pharma Inc. (TSE: 4503, President and CEO: Naoki Okamura., “Astellas”), by which Astellas will license a suite of Twist’s VHH antibody libraries to be used by Astellas for drug discovery and development.
“We are pleased to extend our collaboration with Astellas to three agreements across two groups within the company, showcasing our ability to meet the varying needs of our customers and support their success,” said Emily M. Leproust, Ph.D., CEO and co-founder of Twist Bioscience. “This latest collaboration with Astellas demonstrates how Twist can enable our customers to grow their pipelines both externally with our antibody discovery services and by supporting their internal discovery with our highly specific and potent antibody libraries.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Astellas will license a suite of Twist’s VHH libraries for a period of five years and will use the libraries to conduct research and development activities. Twist will receive an upfront payment and will be eligible to receive annual maintenance fees and fees per product through payments associated with specific clinical and commercial milestones. Twist will also be eligible to receive royalty payments on product sales.
Twist VHH Antibody Libraries
Antibodies contain two variable domains, the heavy and the light chains. A VHH antibody, also known as a single domain antibody, is the antigen binding domain of the heavy chain, with three complementary determining regions (CDRs), or areas where antigens bind to the antibody. Twist’s VHH libraries use novel methods that combine synthetic and natural approaches to maximize diversity up to 10 billion for each library, creating high quality VHH libraries for use against any protein target. The small size of the VHH antibodies allow them to access targets that traditional antibodies cannot, with tight binding affinity. The modular nature of VHH antibodies supports creation of bi- or multi-specific antibodies ideal for developing next generation therapies specific to oncology, autoimmune disease and virology. During the pandemic, Twist published on the use of these libraries to neutralize SARS-CoV-2 (MAbs. 2022; 14(1): 2002236).
About Twist Biopharma Solutions (The Biologics Discovery and Optimization Division of Twist Bioscience)
Twist Biopharma Solutions combines high-throughput DNA synthesis technology, deep expertise in antibody engineering and in vivo, in vitro and in silico discovery methods to provide end-to-end antibody discovery solutions across the preclinical continuum and tailored to our partner’s specific needs. By leveraging our unique ability to manufacture DNA at scale, we can construct proprietary antibody libraries with discovery beginning with either in vivo or in vitro diversity. Our Library of Libraries gives our partners an integral and unbiased resource for antibody therapeutic discovery and optimization. This precise and rational approach to library fabrication combined with sophisticated bioinformatics and software expertise expedites antibody discovery by decreasing risk, increasing speed, and lowering the failure rate for antibody therapeutic development. Additionally, in vivo discovery approaches including single B cell screening and hybridoma discovery enable parallel paths where multiple technology methods can be leveraged to create a panel of highly diverse antibody leads. Our automated screening and panning processes enable us to identify high affinity leads that our partners can move forward into the clinic. We also offer supporting development capabilities, including IgG conversion, expression, purification, biophysical characterization, and functional characterization.
For more information visit: https://www.twistbioscience.com/products/antibody-discovery/twist-bioscience-and-abveris
About Twist Bioscience Corporation
Twist Bioscience is a leading and rapidly growing synthetic biology and genomics company that has developed a disruptive DNA synthesis platform to industrialize the engineering of biology. The core of the platform is a proprietary technology that pioneers a new method of manufacturing synthetic DNA by “writing” DNA on a silicon chip. Twist is leveraging its unique technology to manufacture a broad range of synthetic DNA-based products, including synthetic genes, tools for next-generation sequencing (NGS) preparation, and antibody libraries for drug discovery and development. Twist is also pursuing longer-term opportunities in digital data storage in DNA and biologics drug discovery. Twist makes products for use across many industries including healthcare, industrial chemicals, agriculture and academic research.
Twist Bioscience Legal Notice Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical facts contained herein, including, but not limited to, statements regarding the potential success of the collaboration and the achievement of any clinical or commercial milestones or product sales, are forward-looking statements reflecting the current beliefs and expectations of management made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other important factors that may cause Twist Bioscience’s actual results, performance, or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance, or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, among others, the risks and uncertainties relating to COVID-19; the ability to attract new customers and retain and grow sales from existing customers; risks and uncertainties of rapidly changing technologies and extensive competition in synthetic biology that could make the products Twist Bioscience is developing obsolete or non-competitive; uncertainties of the retention of significant customers; the ability of Twist Bioscience to successfully integrate acquired companies, including Abveris, and to achieve expected benefits from acquisitions; supply chain and other disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic or otherwise; risks of third party claims alleging infringement of patents and proprietary rights or seeking to invalidate Twist Bioscience’s patents or proprietary rights; and the risk that Twist Bioscience’s proprietary rights may be insufficient to protect its technologies. For a description of the risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from those expressed in these forward-looking statements, as well as risks relating to Twist Bioscience’s business in general, see Twist Bioscience’s risk factors set forth in Twist Bioscience’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on February 7, 2023 and subsequent filings with the SEC. Any forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date hereof, and Twist Bioscience specifically disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
For Twist Bioscience:
SVP, Corporate Affairs