Biodefense proteomics collaboration receives NIAID funding

29 September 2003 Proteomics Weekly

2003 SEP 29 - ( & -- Ciphergen Biosystems, Inc., (CIPH) announced that the University of Texas Medical Branch-Galveston (UTMB) and Ciphergen have received funding from the National Institute of Health (NIAID) to develop new strategies for early diagnosis of viral infections caused by exposure to bioterrorism agents.

This research project will combine UTMB's proprietary thioaptamer technology with Ciphergen's SELDI ProteinChip technology to study the inflammatory response of cytokines and key transcription factors when challenged with pathogens.

To obtain this grant, UTMB and Ciphergen submitted preliminary data obtained from a prototype thioaptamer array. This collaboration will work towards identifying and characterizing novel protein interactions associated with viral infection, enhancing innate immunity, and controlling cytopathological immune reactions. Ultimately, this could result in protein-based diagnostics and therapeutics.

The long-term objective of this collaborative effort is to develop real-time, chip-based identification and assays of host factors associated with viral infections.

William Rich, president and CEO of Ciphergen, stated, "We are delighted to be working with UTMB on this important initiative. The thioaptamer technology will allow us to rapidly develop the biochip content necessary to discover and assay the key protein players associated with pathogen challenge."

David Gorenstein, Principal Investigator at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston commented, "The combination of thioaptamer technology with SELDI ProteinChip technology makes this a very exciting program."

This article was prepared by Proteomics Weekly editors from staff and other reports.