Molecular Farming - List of Originators (companies and Universities) and Research Projects and Products

List of Originators (companies and Universities) and Research Projects and Products

Please note that this list is by no means exhaustive.

  • Dow AgroSciences - poultry vaccine against Newcastle disease virus (first PMP to be approved for marketing by the USDA Center for Veterinary Biologics Dow never intended to market the vaccine. "'Dow Agrosciences used the animal vaccine as an example to completely run through the process. A new platform needs to be approved, which can be difficult when authorities get in contact with it for the first time', explains the plant physiologist Stefan Schillberg, head of the Molecular Biology Division at the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology Aachen."
  • Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology, with sites in Germany, the US, and Chile is the lead institute of the Pharma Planta consortium of 33 partner organizations from 12 European countries and South Africa, funded by the European Commission. Pharma Planta is developing systems for plant production of proteins in greenhouses in the European regulatory framework.
  • Genzyme - antithrombin III in goat milk
  • GTC Biotherapeutics - ATryn (recombinant human antithrombin) in goat milk
  • Icon Genetics produces therapeutics in transiently infected Nicotiana benthamiana (relative of tobacco) plants in greenhouses in Halle, Germany or in fields. First product is a vaccine for a cancer, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.
  • Iowa State University - immunogenic protein from E. coli bacteria in pollen-free corn as a potential vaccine against E. coli for animals and humans
  • Kentucky Bioprocessing took over Large Scale Biology's facilities in Owensboro, Kentucky, and offers contract biomanufacturing services in tobacco plants, grown in greenhouses or in open fields.
  • Medicago Inc. - Pre-clinical trials of Influenza vaccine made in transiently infected Nicotiana benthamiana (relative of tobacco) plants in greenhouses Medicago has a system for pharming in alfalfa that their website says is "not suited for the production of vaccines"
  • Pharming - C1 inhibitor, human collagen 1, fibrinogen (with American Red Cross), and lactoferrin in cow milk The intellectual property behind the fibrinogen project was acquired from PPL Therapeutics when PPL went bankrupt in 2004.
  • Planet Biotechnology - antibodies against Streptococcus mutans, antibodies against doxorubicin, and ICAM 1 receptor in tobacco
  • PlantForm Corporation - biosimilar trastuzumab in tobacco
  • ProdiGene - was developing several proteins, including aprotinin, trypsin and a veterinary TGE vaccine in corn. Was in process of launching trypsin product in 2002 when later that year its field test crops contaminated conventional crops. Unable to pay the $3 million cost of the cleanup, it was purchased by International Oilseed Distributors in 2003 International Oilseed Distributors is controlled by Harry H. Stine, who owns one of the biggest soybeans genetics companies in the US. ProdiGene's maize-produced trypsin, with the trademark TrypZean is currently sold by Sigma-Aldritch as a research reagent.
  • Syngenta - Beta carotene in rice (this is "Golden rice 2"), which Syngenta has donated to the Golden Rice Project
  • University of Arizona - Hepatitis C vaccine in potatoes
  • Ventria Bioscience - lactoferrin and lysozyme in rice
  • Washington State University - lactoferrin and lysozyme in barley
  • European COST Action on Molecular Farming - COST Action FA0804 on Molecular Farming provides a pan European coordination centre, connecting academic and government institutions and companies from 23 countries. The aim of the Action is to advance the field by encouraging scientific interactions, providing expert opinion and encouraging commercial development of new products. The COST Action also provides grants allowing young scientists to visit participating laboratories across Europe for scientific training.

Projects known to be abandoned

  • Agragen, in collaboration with University of Alberta - docosahexaenoic acid and human serum albumin in flax
  • Chlorogen, Inc. - cholera, anthrax, and plague vaccines, albumin, interferon for liver diseases including hepatitis C, elastin, 4HB, and insulin-like growth factor in tobacco chloroplasts. Went out of business in 2007.
  • Dow Chemical Company made a deal with Sunol Molecular in 2003 to develop antibodies against tissue factor in plants and in mammalian cell culture and to compare them. In 2005 Sunol sold all its tissue factor antagonists to Tanox, which in turn was bought by Genentech in 2003. Genentech licensed the tissue factor program to Altor in 2008 Altor is itself a spinout from Sunol. The product under development, ALT-836, formerly known as TNX-832 and Sunol-cH36, is the not the plant-produced antibody, but rather is mammalian antibody, more specifically, a chimeric antibody produced in a hybridoma.
  • Epicyte - spermicidal antibodies in corn Epicyte was purchased by Biolex in 2004 at which time Epicyte's portfolio was described as "focused on the discovery and development of human monoclonal antibody products as treatments for a wide range of infectious and inflammatory diseases."
  • Large Scale Biology Corporation (LSBC) (bankrupt) - used Tobacco mosaic virus to develop reagents and patient-specific vaccines for Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, Papillomavirus vaccine, parvovirus vaccine, alpha galactosidase for Fabry disease, lysosomal acid lipase, aprotinin, interferon Alpha 2a and 2b, G-CSF, and Hepatitis B vaccine antigens in tobacco. In 2004, LSBC announced an agreement with Sigma-Aldritch under which LSB would produce recombinant aprotinin in plants of the tobacco family and Sigma-Aldrich would commercially distribute LSBC's recombinant product to its customers in the R&D, cell culture and manufacturing markets. As of October 2012 SIgma still has the protein in stock.
  • Meristem Therapeutics - Lipase, lactoferrin, plasma proteins, collagen, antibodies (IgA, IgM), allergens and protease inhibitors in tobacco. Liquidated in 2008.
  • Novoplant GmgH - therapeutic proteins in tobacco and feed peas. Conducted field trials in US of feed peas for pigs that produced anti-bacterial antibodies. Former CSO is now with another company; appears that Novoplant is out of business.
  • Monsanto Company - abandoned development of pharmaceutical producing corn
  • PPL Therapeutics - Alpha 1-antitrypsin for cystic fibrosis and emphysema in sheep milk. This is the company that created Dolly the Sheep, the first cloned animal. Went bankrupt in 2004. Assets were acquired by Pharming and an investment group including University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
  • SemBioSys - insulin in safflower. In May 2012, SemBioSys terminated its operations.

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