Beroni Group Has Successfully Constructed and Purified 24 Types of Nanobodies for Detection and Treatment of COVID-19

Sydney, AUSTRALIA


NEW YORK and SYDNEY, Australia, Aug. 04, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Beroni Group (OTCQX: BNIGF; NSX: BTG) (“Beroni” or the “Company”), an international diversified biopharmaceutical enterprise focused on the research, development, innovation and commercialization of therapies and products for treatment of global diseases, today provided an update on the development of the previously announced potential medical solution utilizing nanobody technology for both detection and treatment of COVID-19 in collaboration with Tianjin University in China.

After identifying the 24 specific nanobodies with high affinity to the new coronavirus N- protein and S-protein antigens through high-throughput screening in May 2020, the scientific team has used structural biology, computational biology and biophysical methods to further analyze and improve the properties of these nanobodies. Through rational design and transformation, the affinity and specificity of these nanobodies have been greatly enhanced. Out of the 24 nanobodies, 16 deals with the S-protein which can be used as antiviral therapeutics and the other 8 deals with the N-protein, for use as a marker in diagnostic assays. The scientists have successfully established a prokaryotic expression and purification system for nanobodies in vitro. In this respect, they have expressed and purified the 16 S-protein nanobodies with a purity of 98%. For the 8 N-protein nanobodies, the nanobody expression vectors have been constructed, and the antibodies purified. The Elisa and Isothermal Titration Calorimetry (ITC) methods were successfully used to determine the affinities of antigens and antibodies, and nanobodies with good affinity are selected for affinity enhancement and humanization.

The scientific team is now moving ahead with its collaboration with an international Contract Research Organization, Genscript Biotech Corporation, to jointly target the coronavirus-specific nanobodies and conduct pseudovirus neutralization test with the objective of screening out nanobodies with strong affinity and good efficacy to prevent the virus infection. On this basis, the team will optimize and humanize these nanobodies combining structure-based design and random mutations. They will use PML (Precise Mutant Library) database and FASEBA (Fast Screening for Expression, Biophysical-Properties and Affinity) screening technology to carry out the affinity maturation test of the nanobodies, and proceed with further purification and verification to obtain the lead nanobody. The humanized modification and affinity maturation of nanobodies are expected to be completed within the next 3 months. The next stage of the study will further advance the preclinical research study such as live virus testing, animal testing and formulation development. The animal testing is aimed to be completed by end-2020 to be followed by the human clinical trials which will take a year to complete. The nanobodies can be used for treatment of coronaviruses, which include the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, the SARS coronavirus of 2003 and MERS coronavirus of 2012.

“These results from our preclinical study highlight the potential of the nanobody-based science and represent an important step forward in our research and development efforts for an effective medical cure and diagnostic assay for the COVID-19 virus. We are committed  to winning the global battle against COVID-19 pandemic in a safe and effective manner,” comments Jacky Zhang, Chairman and CEO of Beroni Group Limited.

About Beroni Group Limited

Beroni Group is an international biopharmaceutical enterprise dedicated to the innovation and commercialization of drugs and therapies to combat various global diseases such as cancer and infectious diseases. Its diversified portfolio is comprised of a US FDA approved virus diagnostic kit, an e-commerce platform for the sale of pharmaceutical products and a development pipeline targeting oncology and cell therapies. Beroni has operations in Australia, United States, China and Japan. To learn more about Beroni, please visit www.beronigroup.com.

About Genscript Biotech Corporation

Genscript Biotech Corporation, a global biotech company listed on Hong Kong Stock Exchange, is a leading life sciences research and application service provider that applies its proprietary technology to various fields from basic life sciences research to translational biomedical development, industrial synthetic products, and cell therapeutic solutions. The company’s mission is to “Make the Human and Nature Healthier through Biotechnology”.

About Tianjin University

The first modern university in China, Tianjin University (previously Peiyang University), is a National Key University that falls directly under the administration of the Ministry of Education in China.  The university operates with a specific focus on engineering integrated with science, liberal arts, business and law. Some of the key facilities at the university include four state-sponsored key laboratories, two national engineering laboratories, three state engineering research centers, and 68 provincial or ministerial key laboratories.

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This press release contains forward-looking statements or forward-looking information, within the meaning of applicable United States and Australian securities laws with respect to the Company. By their nature, forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results suggested by the forward-looking statements. Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on the forward-looking statements. Generally forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of terminology such as “anticipate”, “will”, “expect”, “may”, “continue”, “could”, “estimate”, “forecast”, “plan”, “intend”, “believe”, “potential” and similar expressions.

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For more information, please contact:

Phone: +61 2 8051 3055
Email: enquiry@beronigroup.com
Website: www.beronigroup.com