Patent protecting the purification of Immunoglobulin Y was granted in Portugal
2022-11-16
Mara Freire, Sandra Bernardo and João Coutinho develop efficient immunoglobulin purification technology from egg yolk.

After submission of protection applications in Portugal, the United States, Europe, and Japan, the technology that protects the purification of immunoglobulin Y from egg yolk was granted on national territory. The patent has as inventors Mara Freire, Sandra Bernardo and João Coutinho, at the date of submission all members of CICECO - Aveiro Institute of Materials and the Department of Chemistry of the University of Aveiro (UAveiro).

The research group led by Mara Freire has developed a technology that allows the purification of immunoglobulin Y from egg yolk, with purity close to 100 percent, in a sustainable way, thus enabling its application on a large scale.

This technology, according to the research team, allows "the production of low-cost antibodies for use, for example, as biopharmaceuticals to fight infectious diseases, in the functionalization of filters with the ability to immobilize viruses or bacteria for application in air purifiers or in the preparation of anti-acne facial masks."

The big challenge inherent in this technology, and which will develop over the next few years, is the human preclinical and clinical (Phases I-III) trials that are still needed, and the associated funding and regulatory authorization, in order to allow its use as a biopharmaceutical for intravenous administration in humans.

The technology targeted for national patenting was developed and validated under two ERC grants, IgYPurTech and PureIgY, awarded to the technology's coordinating inventor, Mara Freire. Patent applications in the United States, Europe, and Japan are still pending for this technology.

With the support of UACOOPERA's Entrepreneurship area, the UAveiro RYAPURTECH spin-off was created, to which the respective patents were licensed, and which is currently exploring the commercial potential of the knowledge generated.Mara Freire, Sandra Bernardo and João Coutinho develop immunoglobulin purification technology from egg yolk.

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