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Researchers Receive Patent for Method to Simplify Pharmaceutical Protein-Development Process

Researchers Receive Patent for Method to Simplify Pharmaceutical Protein-Development Process
Ellen Brune

Ellen Brune

The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office has issued a full patent for protein manufacturing technology developed through research at the University of Arkansas.

The new method will simplify the pharmaceutical production of proteins used in drugs that treat a variety of diseases and health conditions such as diabetes, cancer, arthritis and macular degeneration, said Ellen Brune, a 2013 doctoral graduate of the university and primary researcher on the project. Her start-up company, Boston Mountain Biotech, is working to shorten development time so that new drugs can get to patients faster.

The former process of protein development used is complicated, time-consuming and expensive.

Bob Beitle

Bob Beitle

The patent, titled “Separatome-based Protein Expression and Purification Platform,” was assigned to the board of trustees of the University of Arkansas and the University of Pittsburgh.

Boston Mountain Biotech – a Genesis Technology Incubator client at the Arkansas Research and Technology Park – holds the exclusive license to market the trademarked Lotus purification platform.

Brune’s research received more than $1 million in research grants through the National Science Foundation and Arkansas Biosciences Institute. Boston Mountain Biotech was established through the National Science Foundation Innovation Corps program.

Ralph Henry

Ralph Henry

In addition to Brune, other inventors named on the patent are Bob Beitle, professor of chemical engineering and associate vice provost for research and economic development at the U of A; Ralph Henry, Distinguished Professor of biological sciences at the U of A; Mohammad Ataai, professor of chemical engineering at the University of Pittsburgh; and Patrick Bartlow, a scientist at Janssen Research and Development, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson.

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