25 Apr 2022
Luzhu Biotech Develops Recombinant Herpes Zoster Vaccine and Bispecific Antibody using Lonza’s GS Xceed® Gene Expression System
  • Luzhu Biotech entered a licensing agreement to use Lonza’s GS Xceed® Gene Expression System with GS piggyBac® transposon technology
  • Luzhu Biotech is developing a recombinant Herpes Zoster vaccine and a therapeutic bispecific antibody injection targeting relapsed or refractory B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and B cell leukemia, utilizing the licensed Lonza technologies

Basel, Switzerland and Beijing, China, 25 April 2022 – Beijing Luzhu Biotechnology Co., Ltd. (Luzhu Biotech), and Lonza, a global development and manufacturing partner to pharma, biotech and nutritional industries, have entered a research and commercial license agreement for Luzhu to use Lonza’s GS Xceed® Gene Expression System with GS piggyBac® transposon technology. Luzhu Biotech is a biopharmaceutical company committed to the research and development of a diverse pipeline of drug candidates for human disease prevention, control, and treatment.

Luzhu Biotech obtained clinical trial approval for its LZ901 Recombinant Herpes Zoster Vaccine used to prevent the infection of herpes zoster virus and suitable for susceptible adults over 50 years old. Made from recombinant varicella zoster virus glycoprotein E expressed in CHO cells, the  LZ901 vaccine is free of preservatives and antibiotics. Luzhu Biotech is also in a clinical trial with its K193 Antibody Injection, a bispecific antibody against human CD19 and CD3 mainly used for the treatment of relapsed or refractory B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and relapsed or refractory B cell leukemia. Both the LZ901 vaccine and K193 antibody are expressed using Lonza’s GS System® with piggyBac™ transposon technology.

The licensing agreement with Lonza ensures Luzhu Biotech’s access to the GS Xceed® Gene Expression System, providing for the development of scalable, robust, and reliable expression processes. Luzhu Biotech noted stable expression of their vaccine and therapeutic bispecific antibody using Lonza's GS Gene Expression System®. The GS Xceed® Expression System toolbox now also includes GS piggyBac® transposon technology that preferentially targets stable regions of the genome associated with highly expressed genes.

Peter Droc, Head of Licensing and Drug Product Services, Lonza, commented: “Luzhu Biotech’s innovative candidates moving to clinical trials is a great step forward in next-generation molecules and vaccine development. At Lonza, we are committed to developing a toolbox of expression systems that help accommodate industry trends. Our flexible model suits all business types such that they can license the technology platform for use in-house.”

Jian Kong, CEO of Luzhu Biotech, commented: “Lonza's GS Xceed expression system is an easy-to-use mammalian cell protein expression system. We have successfully expressed and produced a variety of recombinant bispecific antibodies and viral proteins by this system. The viral antigens expressed by the GS Xceed® system show superior immunogenicity and the glycosylation type covers the kinds of viral proteins already available quite well. Immunological results also showed that the recombinant herpes zoster vaccine utilizing Lonza’s GS Xceed® Expression System could stimulate the immune system of animals to induce good cellular immunity and humoral immunity.”