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Aptagen Inc. Acquires ProteinGenesis Inc.


Tucson, AZ – Jun 15, 2001

Aptagen Inc. in Herndon, Va., has acquired ProteinGenesis Inc. (PGI), a protein engineering company founded in 1993 by Research Corporation Technologies (RCT) and the University of Delaware.

Aptagen, a gene and protein bioengineering company, develops protein products for the medical, agricultural and chemical industries. The company has combined its own Enzyme Evolution™ technology with that of PGI and recently launched its Protein Genesis™ platform for enhancing and modifying the function of human therapeutic proteins.

The Protein Genesis™ technology, developed at the University of Delaware by Drs. Jacques J. Pène and Ramaswamy K. Iyer, produces proteins with enhanced and modified characteristics rapidly, efficiently and inexpensively. RCT managed the company since its formation.

“We are pleased to find a company that saw synergy in our technology,” said former PGI president and RCT director Dr. Bennett N. Cohen. “Aptagen’s new Protein Genesis™ platform has the unique advantages of both systems.”

“The combination of protein engineering technology developed at the University of Delaware with that of Aptagen can provide a unique mechanism for enhancing the function of human therapeutic proteins,” said University of Delaware Associate Provost for Research Dr. Richard D. Holsten. “We look forward to this combination of technologies playing a significant role in the development of new healthcare products that can benefit society.”

PGI employed its technology successfully to increase the bleach and heat tolerance of an important enzyme in detergents. The company also has altered the acid sensitivity of other proteins and increased the luminescence of the green fluorescent protein (GFP).

For additional information about Aptagen and its products, contact Benjamin H. Rudolph, Aptagen director of public relations, 2190 Fox Mill Road, Herndon, VA 20171, (703) 793-8000, ext. 250, (703) 793-8037 fax.


Research Corporation Technologies is an independent technology management company working in partnership with universities and research institutions worldwide to commercialize their biomedical and optics technologies. Commercialization vehicles include licensing programs, partnerships, seed investments and venture development of early-stage technologies.

Emerging as the leader in DNA engineering technologies, Aptagen has the tools to substantially improve or alter protein function, making drugs safer through reduced side effects and increased efficacy, while simultaneously maximizing expression yield for commercial scale manufacturing. Through Aptagen’s Gene Forge™ codon optimization and custom gene synthesis platform, protein expression can be increased up to 10-fold, decreasing commercial manufacturing costs by 60 percent or more and accelerating the commercialization of the Human Genome Project. Aptagen’s Protein Genesis™ molecular evolution platform can be used in tandem with the Gene Forge™ to create entirely new multi-function proteins, or can be employed to modify and enhance existing proteins to improve functionality and create safer and more potent second-generation biologics.