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Tuesday, 21 January 2020 14:35

Braunschweig: Using phage display for better treatment of diphtheria Featured

In a project funded by the PETA International Science Consortium Ltd., scientists from the Institute of Biochemistry, Biotechnology and Bioinformatics at the Technical University of Braunschweig, Germany, as well as from the British National Institute for Biological Standards and Control (NIBSC), have developed human antibodies that neutralize the diphtheria toxin.

Using the Antibody Phage Display of the TU Braunschweig, a method for the selection of antibodies in the test tube, human recombinant antibodies were generated without an immunization of animals like horses. These new antibodies are able to neutralize the diphtheria toxin. The Department of Biotechnology at TU Braunschweig is headed by Professor Stefan Dübel, who is one of the inventors of the antibody phage display, a method for generating antibodies in the test tube without immunization of animals.

A combination of antibodies that best neutralize the toxin is a promising candidate for further clinical development to replace the diphtheria antitoxin from horse serum in the future.

The results were published in the journal "Scientific Reports" and commented in an article in the journal "Science":
Esther Veronika Wenzel, Margarita Bosnak, Robert Tierney, Maren Schubert, Jeffrey Brown, Stefan Dübel, Androulla Efstratiou, Dorothea Sesardic, Paul Stickings & Michael Hust (2020) Human antibodies neutralizing diphtheria toxin in vitro and in vivo. Sci Rep 10, 571. doi:10.1038/s41598-019-57103-5