The Korea Herald


iNtRON developed New CRISPR/Cas technology specific for Bacteriophage as PHAGERUS® Platform


Published : Aug. 10, 2022 - 10:21

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  • CRISPR/Cas system for bacteria that are not E. coli or Streptococcus pyogenes
  • Customized gene editing technology for unique modified-bacteriophages
  • To validate efficacy of SARS-CoV-2 mimotopes loaded PHAGERUS® platform

BOSTON and SEOUL, South Korea, Aug. 10, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- iNtRON Biotechnology ("iNtRON", announced today that iNtRON has developed its unique CRISPR/Cas system customized for the genetic modification of certain bacteria and corresponding bacteriophage.

An iNtRON official said that the technology enables the Company to freely edit various genes in the bacteriophage gene to have new and wanted functions.

iNtRON's PHAGERUS® platform technology is being developed on the hypothesis that bacteriophage plays an instrumental role to maintain immune system in human beyond the common concept of 'bacteria killing virus'.  In other words, massive number of bacteriophages have existed longer than humans, and some have controlled certain harmful viruses and involved in affecting the human immune system.

Hereat, iNtRON has utilized bacteriophages that have known to be safe for human as prophylactics and therapeutics of viral diseases, and worked on the PHAGERUS® platform technology to facilitate the manipulation of multiple structural genes that play a morphological and functional role in bacteriophages. The Company explained PHAGERUS® platform technology, the source technology for bacteriophage-specific gene editing and virus control, focuses on adding characteristics that can effectively control specific viruses while maintaining the original functions of bacteriophages (bacteriophage infectivity and bacterial control).

Dr. SON, Jee Soo, the head of Bio Drug Business said, "Virus targeting PHAGERUS® platform was developed based on 'ViP cycle hypothesis (relationship between bacteria-virus-phage)' to screen natural bacteriophage candidates for vaccine and secure antigen-peptide (Ag-peptide; mimotope) candidates utilizing its own modified phage-display technology."

In this regard, the Company plans to continuously develop antiviral cocktail agents composed of natural bacteriophages collected in nature, and aims to utilize the mimotope discovered in-house as genetic engineering technology rather than the common use to express on a mockup bacteriophage which is a backbone vehicle so the mimotope could be applied to engineered bacteriophage agents eventually.

The Company named Mockup-PHAGERUS®  collectively for the bacteriophage and its platform technology to label the outer membrane protein region of a specific bacteriophage using a bacteriophage-customized gene editing technology for mimotope, which can exhibit antiviral effect. Mockup-PHAGERUS®  is largely distinguished from the existing technology in that a company-developed specific host is implemented rather than a commonly used host (Escherichia coli, Streptococcus pyogenes) .

In addition, a specific bacterial vector was developed using the CRISPR/Cas system derived from the selected host to allow the insertion, removal, and replacement of a specific gene in a candidate bacteriophage to be used as Mockup-PHAGERUS®, then inserted into the specific host to selectively active on certain bacteria and its corresponding bacteriophage

Mr. YOON, Kyung Won, CEO of iNtRON said, "The PHAGERUS® platform technology has value of gene editing ability in bacteria strains without precedent use. In the future, we plan to use it to validate vaccine candidates by presenting various mimotopes expected to exert activity over SARS-CoV-2 into Mockup-PHAGERUS®." Mr. Yoon continued, "We expect that CRISPR/Cas-based gene editing technology will be used as a fundamental technology that can freely improve various beneficial bacteriophages, and we will expand to various area (Influenza virus and G4 virus) of antiviral drug development."

About PHAGERUS® Platform

iNtRON's PHAGERUS® technology discovered the applicability of bacteriophage as a virus neutralizing vaccine & therapeutics, and has secured a number of related core technologies, PHAGERUS® can induce humoral immunity as well as cell-meditated immunity by oral or nasal vaccines based on natural bacteriophages with homology of targeting virus or engineered bacteriophage that express antigens or virus-like particles on their surfaces.

About iNtRON Biotechnology, Inc.

iNtRON is a leader in bacteriophage-based technology with aim to develop and investigate into the 'Immune & Immunotherapeutics' market. While pursuing global research and business development (R&BD) investments since their foundation and accelerated development after entering its IPO in KOSDAQ, the company honed in on innovating BIO New Drugs by developing various 'First-in-Concept' bio-drugs and conducting clinical studies in phases. The Company is committed to development of innovative innovation in the infectious diseases and 'Immune & Immunotherapeutics' area.

About iNtODEWORLD, Inc.

iNtRON has established its wholly owned US subsidiary, iNtODEWORLD, Inc. in 2017. iNtODEWORLD was initially registered in Delaware and the headquarter office is currently located in Boston. iNtODEWORLD provides news, updates and platform development progresses of iNtRON to its potential global partners and collaborators along with its own R&BD works in the US.

Contact Us

YOON, Kyung Won (Kevin) / CEO, Vice President /
SHIN, Tae Kyu (TK) / BD Team Leader /
BD Team /

iNtRON Biotechnology, Inc.

#708, 148, Sagimakgol-ro, Jungwon-gu, Seongnam-si,
Gyeonggi-do, Republic of Korea

1500 District Avenue, Suite 2097, Burlington, MA 01803, USA

it is iNtRON.