In immunotherapy the immune system is exploited to achieve a therapeutic effect. This has been developed extensively during the last decade and was highlighted by the Nobel Prize in medicine 2018 being awarded to the inventors of checkpoint inhibitors, a key immunotherapy against cancer. Development of immunotherapies require highly specialized setups because the drugs often have their effect on immune cells and target the interaction between various immune cells and malignant cells. Production of immunotherapies, which can be small molecules, antibodies and even cells is also a challenging endeavour as the drug must often be produced specifically for individual patients.
At SINTEF we have considerable experience and capacities such as bioreactors, high throughput screening lab, advanced analysis by mass spectrometry and formulation tailored towards discovery, development and production of conventional drugs. Through this project we hope to develop these capabilities further to also include immunotherapies. The project spans from cell-based assays and animal models, through quality assurance and in collaboration with Catapult Life Sciences GMP production.