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DHS Award for Biothreat Antibody Development

The DHS Directorate of Science and Technology, Chemical and Biological Defense Division has awarded a sole source contract to Silver Lake Research Corporation (SLRC) for continued development of threat agent specific monoclonal antibodies supporting development of rapid detection assays.

SLRC has produced a group of highly specific monoclonal antibodies for use in DHS and FEDGOV assays. DHS requires that SLRC continue and complete the work for the research, development and generation of hyper-specific monoclonal antibodies specific for bacterial and viral biothreat agents.

The overall objective is to develop and deploy highly specific and sensitive rapid first responder, clinical diagnostic, and biothreat detection assays capable of fulfilling the needs of multiple agencies and departments to support the national biodefense and preparedness mission. This requirement was originally awarded to Silver Lake Research Corporation (SLRC) on June 4, 2012 under DHS Long Range Broad Agency Announcement 11-03, with several continuation contracts since that time.

“Using an innovative and proprietary EAP Immunization methods, SLRC has overcome the technical problems associated with the work that has been performed thus far under the previous and current DHS contracts to overcome the probable “non-immunogenicity” of selected sequences, and ensure that the antibodies are designed to bind to the selected sequence in the context of the intact native protein,” states the announcement.

Previously completed results from SLRC showed that of the four Bacillus anthracis antigenic marker peptides used, all four produced specific MAbs which are now being characterized by DHS, U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC), and other Federal Research Laboratories.

“This accomplishment marks the first successful attempt to employ cytokine mediated artificial host responses, coupled with bioinformatics driven recombinant antigens as a rational approach to generating highly specific antibodies to support the development of rapid detection assays for the national biodefense and preparedness mission,” states the announcement.

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