Articles by Matilde Merlin in JoVE
A Comparative Analysis of Recombinant Protein Expression in Different Biofactories: Bacteria, Insect Cells and Plant Systems Elisa Gecchele*1, Matilde Merlin*1, Annalisa Brozzetti2, Alberto Falorni2, Mario Pezzotti1, Linda Avesani1 1Department of Biotechnology, University of Verona, Verona, Italy, 2Department of Internal Medicine, University of Perugia, Perugia, Italy In this study the expression of a target human recombinant protein in different production platforms was compared. We focused on traditional fermenter-based cultures and on plants, describing the set-up of each system and highlighting, on the basis of the reported results, the inherent limits and advantages for each platform.
Other articles by Matilde Merlin on PubMed
Comparative Analysis of Different Biofactories for the Production of a Major Diabetes Autoantigen Transgenic Research. Apr, 2014 | Pubmed ID: 24142387 The 65-kDa isoform of human glutamic acid decarboxylase (hGAD65) is a major diabetes autoantigen that can be used for the diagnosis and (more recently) the treatment of autoimmune diabetes. We previously reported that a catalytically-inactive version (hGAD65mut) accumulated to tenfold higher levels than its active counterpart in transgenic tobacco plants, providing a safe and less expensive source of the protein compared to mammalian production platforms. Here we show that hGAD65mut is also produced at higher levels than hGAD65 by transient expression in Nicotiana benthamiana (using either the pK7WG2 or MagnICON vectors), in insect cells using baculovirus vectors, and in bacterial cells using an inducible-expression system, although the latter system is unsuitable because hGAD65mut accumulates within inclusion bodies. The most productive of these platforms was the MagnICON system, which achieved yields of 78.8 μg/g fresh leaf weight (FLW) but this was substantially less than the best-performing elite transgenic tobacco plants, which reached 114.3 μg/g FLW after six generations of self-crossing. The transgenic system was found to be the most productive and cost-effective although the breeding process took 3 years to complete. The MagnICON system was less productive overall, but generated large amounts of protein in a few days. Both plant-based systems were therefore advantageous over the baculovirus-based production platform in our hands.
Comparative Evaluation of Recombinant Protein Production in Different Biofactories: the Green Perspective BioMed Research International. 2014 | Pubmed ID: 24745008 In recent years, the production of recombinant pharmaceutical proteins in heterologous systems has increased significantly. Most applications involve complex proteins and glycoproteins that are difficult to produce, thus promoting the development and improvement of a wide range of production platforms. No individual system is optimal for the production of all recombinant proteins, so the diversity of platforms based on plants offers a significant advantage. Here, we discuss the production of four recombinant pharmaceutical proteins using different platforms, highlighting from these examples the unique advantages of plant-based systems over traditional fermenter-based expression platforms.
A Downstream Process Allowing the Efficient Isolation of a Recombinant Amphiphilic Protein from Tobacco Leaves Journal of Chromatography. B, Analytical Technologies in the Biomedical and Life Sciences. Jun, 2014 | Pubmed ID: 24786219 The 65-kDa isoform of human glutamic acid decarboxylase (hGAD65) is a major autoantigen in autoimmune diabetes. The heterologous production of hGAD65 for diagnostic and therapeutic applications is hampered by low upstream productivity and the absence of a robust and efficient downstream process for product isolation. A tobacco-based platform has been developed for the production of an enzymatically-inactive form of the protein (hGAD65mut), but standard downstream processing strategies for plant-derived recombinant proteins cannot be used in this case because the product is amphiphilic. We therefore evaluated different extraction buffers and an aqueous micellar two-phase system (AMTPS) to optimize the isolation and purification of hGAD65mut from plants. We identified the extraction conditions offering the greatest selectivity for hGAD65mut over native tobacco proteins using a complex experimental design approach. Under our optimized conditions, the most efficient initial extraction and partial purification strategy achieved an overall hGAD65mut yield of 92.5% with a purification factor of 12.3 and a concentration factor of 23.8. The process also removed a significant quantity of phenols, which are major contaminants present in tobacco tissue. This is the first report describing the use of AMTPS for the partial purification of an amphiphilic recombinant protein from plant tissues and our findings could also provide a working model for the initial recovery and partial purification of hydrophobic recombinant proteins from transgenic tobacco plants.