Improved Supercoiled Plasmid Purification

Period of Performance: 08/15/2000 - 03/31/2001


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Puresyn, Inc.
Malvern, PA 19355
Principal Investigator


Plasmid DNA has become the basis for new approaches to gene therapy and polynucleotide-based vaccines. The use of plasmid DNA as a pharmaceutical has presented challenges for its manufacture and characterization. Current technology for the large-scale production of plasmid DNA using CsCl gradients or first-generation column chromatography for purification is often inefficient, resulting in low purity and yields. The ability to remove contaminants such as plasmid isoforms, chromosomal DNA, RNA and host endotoxins is also compromised. A new process is proposed, based on a novel polymer resin PolyFlo[R]. In this Phase I proposal, we propose to evaluate the entire manufacturing process, fermentation through formulation to achieve efficient, cost-effective large- scale production. In addition, we will evaluate the effects of residual contaminants on transfection efficiency. The results will be used to support a Phase II application to evaluate the correlation between purity, in vivo biological activity and safety. Results of this research will have immediate impact for those engaged in the use of plasmid DNA for gene delivery and have commercialization implications for PolyFlo. Additionally, the ability to manufacture plasmids at large-scale will eliminate a significant obstacle to the development of the gene therapy/DNA vaccine market. PROPOSED COMMERCIAL APPLICATIONS: The PolyFlo[R] resin is manufactured by Puresyn, Inc. and is to be used as part of the purification process in the development of gene therapy and nucleic acid-based products. The results of the proposed research will offer a process to a new technology area to Academic and Industrial Healthcare Markets. High purity and yield as well as a reduction in process time will lower production expenses from analytical through large-scale development.