SAN DIEGO and FREISING, Germany /PRNewswire/ -- Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services, a fully owned subsidiary of Ajinomoto Co. Inc. (TSE: 2802), and XL-protein GmbH, a privately owned German biopharmaceutical company, are pleased to announce a Strategic Alliance. Ajinomoto will apply its proprietary Corynex® expression system together with XL-protein's proprietary PASylation® technology for plasma half-life extension to develop a series of therapeutic compounds.

Ajinomoto and XL-protein have established the efficient production of a PASylated proprietary GLP-1 variant with extended half-life at laboratory scale yielding >3 grams soluble protein per liter bacterial culture including facile purification from the supernatant. The PASylated GLP-1 variant maintains high receptor affinity. In vivo pharmacokinetic studies in mice have revealed a drastically prolonged half-life, suggesting potentially weekly or biweekly dosing in human patients. Ajinomoto has started a partnering process for this molecule.

Michiya Kanzaki, Associate General Manager / Business Development of Ajinomoto commented, "We are very happy and excited about this strategic alliance. The alliance combining PASylation® and Corynex®expression technology will provide novel drug candidates with a prolonged half-life and cGMP ready production system with high yield, widening our offerings to the pharmaceutical companies and eventually a meaningful therapeutic option for patients."

"PASylation® technology is the biological solution for plasma-half extension of therapeutic proteins and peptides. We believe that PASylation® offers a simpler manufacturing process and superior pharmacological properties," commented Claus Schalper, CEO of XL-protein. "We are excited to work with Ajinomoto as a leading Japanese life science company to further exploit the potential of our technology and to develop new therapeutic options for the treatment of metabolic diseases."

Financial terms of the agreement have not been disclosed.


About XL-protein

XL-protein is a German biotech company commercializing its ground-breaking PASylation® technology, which enables the design of biopharmaceuticals with extended plasma half-life and enhanced action. Based on a strong proprietary technology position, XL-protein focuses at the preclinical as well as clinical development of PASylated proteins in diverse disease areas. XL-protein is engaged in a growing number of partnerships with international pharmaceutical and biotech companies at various levels. For more information, please visit: www.xl-protein.com