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EpiVax BioAtla Collaboration Page

Providence and San Diego, 24 April 2013 – EpiVax Inc., an unique immunology company with a strong focus on immunogenicity mitigation and BioAtla, LLC, a San Diego headquartered antibody therapeutics developer, today announced a collaborative agreement to incorporate EpiVax’ proprietary immunogenicity screening technology into BioAtla’s antibody Express HumanizationTM platform.

EpiVax specializes in immunogenicity screening for protein therapeutics, immunogenicity mitigation and T cell-driven vaccine design, using a suite of proprietary in silico tools. These tools are based on the extensively validated EpiMatrix system. Their ISPRI-HT (for high-throughput) in silico analysis screens and triages large numbers of  antibodies for overall and relative immunogenic potential and identifies lower risk candidates to move forward. The EpiMatrix prediction has been shown in prospective studies (and retrospective studies) to correlate with clinical immunogenicity.[1] EpiMatrix is the only screening system system that takes into consideration Tregitopes (T regulatory epitopes), a unique EpiVax discovery that is associated with regulatory T cell induction (Tregitope publications).

BioAtla’s proprietary Express HumanizationTM entails synthesizing a combinatorial library of non-human target monoclonal antibodies fused in frame to a validated collection of human frameworks, and screening for binding, function and expression. Unlike more traditional approaches such as CDR grafting, this powerful approach allows for the selection of the most favorable combinations of fully human frameworks in terms of maintaining, and improving, the binding activity of the parental antibody without the need to make back mutations. In addition, these antibodies are uniquely selected human therapeutics since they are simultaneously screened for expression (see CIAO!) and other targeted characteristics with an elite set of expressed human frameworks selected in the manufacturing host.

The addition of EpiVax high-throughput EpiMatrix (ISPRI-HT) analysis to the clone selection from BioAtla’s Express HumanizationTM platform expands the functional selectivity of BioAtla’s unique expression-based humanization process by providing the third level clone selection criterion for developing human antibody therapeutics – immunogenicity. This rapid and powerful process is expected to increase the success rate of biotherapeutics relative to other technologies where downstream failures cost the industry millions of dollars and years of additional development time.

Dr. Annie De Groot, CEO/CSO of EpiVax said, “This collaboration brings two best-in-class technologies together to serve the needs of the biologics industry. Integration of EpiMatrix into the BioAtla platform will increase the likelihood of successful clinical development.”

About BioAtla

BioAtla, LLC, is a global biology outsourcing developer based in San Diego, CA, with research operations in San Diego and Beijing. BioAtla provides an extensive range of protein therapeutic services that include target discovery, humanization, fully human antibody generation, affinity maturation, conditional biologic generation, expression optimization, enzyme engineering, pathway engineering, epitope mapping and more. They are a pioneer in BioAcceleration™, using a global infrastructure to deliver cost-efficient access to state-of-the-art technologies and services and maximizing antibody and other protein product development opportunities for their client partners.

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About EpiVax

EpiVax, Inc. is a Providence, Rhode Island biotechnology company focused on the development of vaccines and immunotherapeutics. EpiVax is one of the world’s leading innovators in the field of ‘Immunogenicity Screening’. The Tregitope technology improves tolerance of protein drugs such as replacement enzymes, blood factors, and monoclonal antibodies. Through the application and utilization of these computational tools, EpiVax is helping to engineer safe, more effective therapeutic proteins and to rapidly design protective and efficacious new vaccines. Led by Dr. Anne S. De Groot, M.D., Immunoinformatics and vaccine design thought leader, EpiVax has enjoyed success in the fields of immunology and bioinformatics, and has developed proprietary immunoinformatics tools for the development and improvement of biotherapeutic drug candidates.

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Contact information for individuals willing to speak on the record regarding this collaboration:

Bioatla imageEpi small
David Wellis, Ph.D.
President, BioAtla, LLC
t: +1 858-558-0708 x3105

Dr. Anne De Groot, MD
CEO/CSO EpiVax, Inc.
t: (401) 272-2123

[1] De Groot and Martin. Reducing risk, improving outcomes: Bioengineering less immunogenic protein therapeutics. Clinical Immunology 2009. 131, 189-201.