Immune intelligence startup Serimmune hopes to higher perceive the connection between antibody epitopes (the elements of antigen molecules that bind to antibodies) and the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
The corporate’s proprietary expertise, initially developed at UC Santa Barbara, supplies a brand new and particular manner of mapping your complete array of a person’s antibodies via a small blood pattern. They do that via using a bacterial peptide show—a type of screening mechanism that may isolate plasmid DNA from antibody-bound micro organism within the pattern. This DNA can then be sequenced to establish epitopes, which offer details about each which antigens somebody could have been uncovered to, in addition to how his or her immune system responded to them.
“It’s a really extremely multiplexed and exquisitely particular manner of wanting on the epitopes discovered by antibodies in a specimen,” mentioned Serimmune CEO Noah Nasser, who has a level in molecular biology from UC San Diego and has beforehand labored for a number of diagnostics firms.
This week, Serimmune announced the launch of a new application of their core technology to assist perceive the illness states of and immune responses to SARS-CoV-2, or the virus that causes COVID-19.
“So what we do is we take these antibody profiles we construct, and we’re in a position to then map these again with a few 12 amino acid specificity to the SARS-CoV-2 proteome,” mentioned Nasser. “And what we discover is that antibody expression is very correlated to illness state, so we are able to distinguish gentle, average, extreme and asymptomatic illness on the premise of antibodies which can be current within the specimen.”
The extra affected person information Serimmune can accumulate, the higher its core expertise turns into at discovering patterns throughout totally different antigen publicity and illness severity. Noticing these patterns sooner gained’t solely assist physicians and researchers to higher perceive how the SARS-CoV-2 virus operates, however also can inform new approaches to diagnostics, remedies, and vaccines for any antigen.
Serimmune’s launch of its new COVID antibody epitope mapping service is a manner of constructing this information extra accessible to clients like vaccine firms, authorities businesses, and educational labs which have proven curiosity in higher understanding the immune response to SARS-CoV-2.
“The important thing was to zero in on the knowledge that researchers needed to know and standardize that,” mentioned Nasser. “We are able to truly now present these outcomes again in as few as two days from pattern receipt.”
Past this new service, Serimmune additionally has plans to launch a longitudinal clinical study on immunity to SARS-CoV-2. Utilizing a painless at-home assortment package, examine individuals ship in small blood samples to Serimmune, which then makes use of its core expertise to stipulate a person immunity map.
“We offer their outcomes again to them within the type of a private immune panorama to COVID,” mentioned Nasser. “And what we’re attempting to do is to grasp over time how that immune response modifications, and what occurs to that immune response on repeated publicity to COVID.”
The mapping expertise is now so particular that it may inform whether or not or not a affected person has antibodies from pure publicity to the SARS-CoV-2 virus or from a vaccine, he added.
Whereas the first focus for Serimmune stays these functions to the COVID-19 pandemic for now, Nasser additionally talked about that the corporate has plans to maneuver into personalised drugs, probably providing their mapping service on to sufferers.
“We consider that this has worth to particular person sufferers in understanding their immune standing and what antigens they’ve been uncovered to,” he mentioned. Till then, Serimmune plans to proceed rising its database with extra affected person samples.