The aberrant function of ion channels has been directly implicated in numerous human diseases ranging from autoimmune to pain disorders. However, despite intense efforts the discovery and clinical development of new drugs has been painfully slow. Historically most ion channel drug development has focused on small molecules, however, the difficulty in achieving appropriate selectivity with these entities has resulted in a growing interest in alternative ion channel targeting modalities including monoclonal antibodies. During the webinar we will be discussing the technical challenges of raising antibodies to membrane-spanning proteins in general together with enabling technologies that may facilitate the discovery of antibody therapeutics to ion channels in particular. Additionally, we will discuss the potential targeting opportunities in the anti-ion channel antibody landscape, along with a number of case studies where functional antibodies that target ion channels have been reported with a focus on antibodies currently in development and progressing towards the clinic.
Catherine Hutchings, PhD
Catherine has spent over 22 years acquiring significant depth of experience in antibody drug discovery and platform applications, working for cutting edge biotech and pharma companies, such as Cambridge Antibody Technology (now MedImmune) and Heptares Therapeutics. At Heptares, she led the research to attain proof-of-concept studies supporting the use of Stabilized Receptors in GPCR antibody discovery and played a key role in securing subsequent antibody discovery collaborations and alliance management. In 2015, Catherine reverted to providing independent scientific and strategic consultancy services where her current assignments include GPCRs, ion channels, platform positioning, target evaluation and due diligence, with a particular focus on antibodies and alternative scaffolds. Catherine graduated with BSc Hons in Genetics and Cell Biology from University of Manchester, UK, and a PhD in Biochemistry and Applied Molecular Biology from UMIST, UK.
Paul Colussi, PhD
Vice President of Research
Paul has spent over 19 years in the biotech sector focusing on the development and application of recombinant protein platforms. Paul joined New England Biolabs in December of 2000 to work on developing the K. lactis yeast expression platform as well as supporting its release to the scientific community in the summer of 2005. In 2008 Paul was recruited to TetraGenetics to lead the development of the Tetrahymena thermophila expression platform and in particular its use in generating high-yields of correctly folded membrane proteins-specifically recombinant human ion channels. Since then Paul has led multiple programs with large pharma and biotech strategic partners to generate historically intractable proteins to support drug discovery programs. In recent years Paul has established TetraGenetics’ proprietary drug pipeline focused on the discovery and development of mAbs targeting therapeutically important ion channels. Paul received his Bachelor of Science degree (Hons) from the University of Sydney before doing his PhD at the University of Illinois, Urbana/Champaign.
Cost: No Cost!