In Drug Discovery, It’s About Time
How new protein technologies are speeding the process of
By William Barrett, Ph.D., W. L. Gore & Associates
In new drug discovery, it’s absolutely crucial to reduce development time, save steps in the process, increase yields, and keep costs under control. And it’s not only good for business—
bringing new drugs to market more quickly can
improve or save lives.
Among the most pressing challenges is the
capability of companies to screen and characterize
proteins efficiently. Large pharmaceutical
companies and small biotech firms alike look for
ways to improve this process and save time.
In response to that challenge, some companies
have introduced new technologies to speed up
This article takes a look at three companies,
and the technologies and processes that each have
developed to save time in biopharmaceutical drug
Their varied approaches to saving time—time to
get to the clinic, time to get critical information
about the proteins under consideration—and their
willingness to evaluate new technologies in long-
established processes like chromatography is a story
that reveals the innumerable paths scientists are
taking towards a single goal of reducing the time
required to get medicines and therapies to patients.
One company, W. L. Gore & Associates, has
introduced technology in drug discovery specifically
for the affinity chromatography step in antibody
capture, where long column residence time was
simply an accepted inconvenience.
Gore is a material science company that works to
solve complex technical challenges in demanding
A second company, CRO Aragen Bioscience,
has implemented a strategy to examine every
step in their delivery process to customers, and
removed minutes, hours, and eventually days from
their antibody purification platform by applying
A third company, Texas-based CDMO iBio, a biotherapeutic manufacturer, has found a way to cut
the time to determine protein characteristics and
deliver decisions down to four weeks, and has helped
innumerable drugs get to clinic much faster.
The three firms, all coming at the time
challenge from different angles, are aiming to help
biopharmaceutical manufacturers reduce the time
required to bring the next potential promising drug
compound to market.
Worker prepares for cleanroom operations.