Touchlight awarded Innovate UK grant for the measurement and intracellular visualisation of synthetic DNA constructs
Touchlight, a biotechnology company pioneering enzymatic DNA production to enable the genetic medicine revolution, has been awarded an Innovate UK grant enabling it to work, alongside partners, at addressing the measurement and intracellular visualisation of synthetic DNA constructs.
With the development of new DNA-based therapies and technologies the demand for nucleic acid products continues to increase. The requirement for large quantities of high-quality DNA and the need to produce more difficult sequences for advanced therapeutics have brought the production of DNA to its limits. Current methods of DNA manufacture rely on bacterial fermentation which suffers from both manufacturing capacity issues and low sequence stability during bacterial growth.
Touchlight’s synthetic biology DNA production process overcomes the current limitation of bacterial fermentation using enzymatic means of production. This in vitro DNA technology can produce large-scale, high-quality constructs using a DNA polymerase to amplify DNA templates and a protelomerase to cleave and ligate amplified DNA into minimal cassettes for use in therapeutics and synthetic biology applications. Continuous developments in the process have resulted in both increased capacity and reduced footprint for DNA manufacture, alleviating some of the current bottlenecks associated with nucleic acid production. Although large advances in this process have been made in DNA manufacturing a greater understanding of how DNA behaves in a cellular context will allow the production of improved DNA products and platform.
Touchlight were successful in securing funding under the Analysis for innovators (A4I) programme and will work with the team at the National Physical Laboratory and the National Measurement Laboratory to deliver the grant’s objectives
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Touchlight is a privately-owned CDMO based in London, U.K., focused on the provision of DNA services and manufacture of enzymatically produced doggybone DNA (dbDNA™) to enable the development of genetic medicines. Touchlight provide rapid, enzymatic DNA development and manufacturing for all advanced therapy production, including mRNA, viral and non-viral gene therapy and DNA API. dbDNA is a minimal, linear, covalently closed structure, which eliminates bacterial sequences. Touchlight’s revolutionary enzymatic production platform enables unprecedented speed, scale, and the ability to target genes with a size and complexity that is impossible with current technologies. Clients can be supported from pre-clinical through development and supply, to licencing and tech transfer for use in-house.
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