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Biotechnology journal

A cell-free expression and purification process for rapid production of protein biologics.


PMID 26427345

Abstract

Cell-free protein synthesis has emerged as a powerful technology for rapid and efficient protein production. Cell-free methods are also amenable to automation and such systems have been extensively used for high-throughput protein production and screening; however, current fluidic systems are not adequate for manufacturing protein biopharmaceuticals. In this work, we report on the initial development of a fluidic process for rapid end-to-end production of recombinant protein biologics. This process incorporates a bioreactor module that can be used with eukaryotic or prokaryotic lysates that are programmed for combined transcription/translation of an engineered DNA template encoding for specific protein targets. Purification of the cell-free expressed product occurs through a series of protein separation modules that are configurable for process-specific isolation of different proteins. Using this approach, we demonstrate production of two bioactive human protein therapeutics, erythropoietin and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor, in yeast and bacterial extracts, respectively, each within 24 hours. This process is flexible, scalable and amenable to automation for rapid production at the point-of-need of proteins with significant pharmaceutical, medical, or biotechnological value.