ImageGeneart AG, global leader in gene synthesis and specialist in the field of Synthetic Biology, announced that the company has been awarded patent EP 1 356 111 "Kernexportreportersystem" (Nucleus Export Reporter System) by the European patent office.

The patent describes a new screening system based on synthesized virus-like reporter genes with which a new class of antiviral drug candidates may be identified. Thus allowing to analyze by high-throughput processes to which extent such drug candidates block the export of viral messenger RNA from the cell nucleus and therefore suppress virus propagation. Additionally, this process may be used for identification of DNA motives positively affecting production rates of cell factories and therefore production costs of proteins.

The patent covers Austria, Switzerland, Spain, Liechtenstein, France, the United Kingdom, Luxemburg, the Netherlands, Sweden, Belgium, Italy and Germany. The German patent of this family of patents had been granted as early as 2008. An application for a comparable protection for North America has been filed under the international patent process.

"With being granted the European patent, we did not only protect a process with which new antiviral active agents can be identified based on optimized genes, now we also have another proprietary technology available, beside our gene optimizing software GeneOptimizer, to systematically improve production efficiency of protein-based therapeutics and vaccines. This emphasizes again our exceptional position as development partner for the pharmaceutical industry as well as the innovative potential of synthetic genes for research", explained Prof. Dr. Ralf Wagner, CEO of Geneart AG.

In 2000, Geneart entered the gene synthesis market and has since become the global market leader. Today, the company is one of the leading specialists in the Synthetic Biology field. Experts at Geneart provide key technologies for the development and production of new therapeutics and vaccines.