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Protein Factory in CHO cells

PI: Elena Rosini and Loredano Pollegioni





ABResearch contract


  • Dario NERI, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH Zürich), Zurich, CH

  • Francesco ACQUATI, Università degli studi dell’Insubria, Varese, IT

  • Greta FORLANI and Lorenzo AZZI, Università degli studi dell’Insubria, Varese, IT

A number of expression systems can be used for the production of recombinant proteins, such as bacteria, yeast, insect cells, mammalian cells, and transgenic plants. Biologically active proteins require proper folding and posttranslational modifications. Among heterologous expression systems, mammalian cells have been the most commonly used to ensure a human-like glycosylation pattern. In particular, the Chinese Hamster Ovary (CHO) cell line is largely used for the production of recombinant human proteins: 84% of approved biopharmaceuticals are expressed in CHO cells, and eight of the ten top selling biologicals in the market today are produced from engineered CHO cells.

In our laboratory, a number of therapeutic proteins are expressed in CHO cells:

  • hormones;

  • the scFv-DAAO conjugate for an antibody-based enzymatic therapy for cancer treatment;

  • the human tumor suppressor protein hRNASET2;

  • the SARS-CoV-2 S (Spike) protein and its RBD domain. 

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