Biomay and RBPS-Technologies Sign Agreement for GMP Minicircle DNA (27 Jul. 2009)

Biomay and RBPS-Technologies announce their manufacturing cooperation for production of GMP-grade minicircle DNA. The companies are now offering a contract manufacturing service to third parties to supply minicircles in both clinical quality for use in clinical trials and research quality. This technology collaboration ideally complements Biomay´s present activities in manufacturing of plasmid DNA and development of allergy vaccines.

Minicircles are circular and covalently closed DNA units lacking plasmid-typical sequences like a bacterial replication origin or an antibiotic resistance marker (bacterial backbone sequences). Minicircles are therefore considered as the safest and most efficient gene transfer vectors for non-viral gene transfer. 

“RBPS” is the abbreviation for “Recombination Based Plasmid Separation”, describing the generation of minicircles. The RBPS-process starts with the replication of a parental plasmid in conventional E. coli culture. After an intra-cellular recombination step, the parental plasmid is divided into a minicircle (carrying the gene of interest) and a miniplasmid (carrying the bacterial backbone sequences). The separation of minicircles and miniplasmids occurs during downstream processing via a novel affinity chromatography technique developed by RBPS-Technolgies.

Peter Mayrhofer, PhD, CEO of RBPS-Technologies, pointed out that “the cooperation with Biomay will enable us to develop, produce and distribute minicircle DNA for clinical trials and research purposes. RBPS-Technologies is now in a worldwide unique position to offer GMP-grade minicircles on a fee-for-service basis. We are convinced that the manufacturing alliance with Biomay makes our technology even more attractive to investors and licensing partners.”

In the particular field of allergy treatment, Biomay acquired exclusivity to utilize the RBPS-Technology for the development of minicircle-based DNA vaccines. Prof. Josef Thalhamer, who is head of Biomay´s development program for nucleic acid vaccines at the University of Salzburg, emphasizes: “Currently, minicircle DNA vectors represent the safest DNA vaccination approach in allergy-specific immunotherapy. It has the potential to become a real break-through technology, with many regulatory and clinical advantages. We are very happy that this technology is now accessible to allergy research.”

About RBPS-Technologies e. U.:
RBPS-Technologies e. U. is an upcoming biotech company located at the campus of the University of Veterinary Medicine in Vienna, Austria. The RBPS system – the company's core technology – was invented, developed and patented by Peter Mayrhofer and Wolfgang Jechlinger (†). Since 2008, RBPS-Technologies is the legal successor of the company Mayrhofer & Jechlinger OEG, which was founded in 2003. RBPS-Technologies is focused on the commercialization of its proprietary minicircle technology and on the development of novel non-viral gene transfer strategies based on minicircle-DNA.

(Vienna, July 27, 2009)

Web link:

Mayrhofer et al. (2009). Use of minicircle plasmids for gene therapy. Methods Mol Biol. 542:87-104.$=relatedreviews&logdbfrom=pubmed

Mayrhofer et al. (2008). Minicircle-DNA production by site specific recombination and protein-DNA interaction chromatography. J Gene Med. 10(11):1253-69.

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