Abcam enters cell editing market through acquisition of EdiGene

China-based EdiGene has developed the industry’s largest off-the-shelf diploid library of over 2,800 single clonal knockout (KO) cell lines targeting over 2,600 genes

Abcam, the Cambridge-based global biotech company, has acquired the entire live cell line and lysates portfolio of EdiGene, a company headquartered in China and focused on developing genome editing technologies into novel therapeutics for a broad range of diseases and into creative solutions to advance drug discovery.

Using its proprietary high-throughput cell editing platform, EdiGene developed the industry’s largest off-the-shelf diploid library of over 2,800 single clonal knockout (KO) cell lines targeting over 2,600 genes in commonly used human cancer cell lines (including HeLa, HEK293-T, A549, HCT116, Hep G2 and MCF7).

Commenting on the acquisition, Cheri Walker, SVP of Corporate Development at Abcam, said: "We are excited to be able to bring the same level of industry-leading quality and data to the cell lines market as we have to research antibodies. The cell line market is in the early stages of development as a research tool, where the provision of more choice, with the right gene targets in the right cell lines, will allow the market to rapidly expand."

Ready-made diploid KO cell lines are an important tool for antibody validation. They also play a significant role in the study and understanding of biological pathways and disease models and can be used in screening and cellular assays. EdiGene's cell lines and lysates are used by academic researchers, global biopharmaceutical companies and antibody companies.

Dong Wei, CEO of EdiGene, commented: "Following our strategic decision to focus on advancing our pipeline of biotherapeutic products and high-throughput genome screening services, we are pleased to be transitioning our complete cell line portfolio to the team at Abcam. As recognised industry leaders in the provision of biologic reagents and tools, we are confident Abcam will be able to provide expert support to our global user-base."

The lysate range is expected to be available through the Abcam website in early Q4 2019, with the expanded cell line offering following throughout 2020. In addition, these products will be used to support further knock-out antibody validation, an integral part of Abcam’s on-going antibody quality initiative.

Financial terms of the transaction have not been disclosed and are expected to have a minimal impact on revenue and earnings in the current financial year.

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