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Drug Discovery

RubrYc® Discovery Engine

Epitope-Steered Antibody Discovery for Precision Immunotherapies

Antibody discovery is challenging. Only 5 of every 5000 concepts make it into the clinic.1 Many antibody failures can be attributed to a lack of specificity for disease-causing cells versus healthy cells and a lack of efficacy – both potentially due to binding the wrong epitope.

Our patented RubrYc Discovery Engine2 aims to increase the likelihood of success. Using artificial intelligence (AI) to drive epitope-steered antibody discovery, the RubrYc Discovery Engine efficiently and consistently delivers antibody candidates against difficult targets​.

It does this by engineering mini-proteins embodying the structure of conformational epitopes, including subdominant epitopes, to discover traditionally challenging therapeutic antibodies. An epitope is the region of a target protein to which antibodies bind. The range of potential epitopes or binding sites on a target is enormous. But not all epitopes are created equally.

Traditional drug discovery has allowed the immune system to drive epitope selection and thus biasing antibody selection towards immunodominant epitopes. Often, the most efficacious epitope is not the immunodominant epitope and therefore the best therapeutic antibodies are missed without epitope steering.

Image of engineered epitope pulling an antibody from a group of antibodies

A Powerful Tech Stack for Validating Difficult Targets

The RubrYc Discovery Engine combines an Epitope Engineering Engine, an Antibody Library, and an Antibody Optimizer to increase the likelihood of success for antibody discovery against difficult targets.

Overview of the RubrYc Discovery EngineLinear diagram with 5 steps. Step 1. Epitope Engineering Engine: AI-powered precision targeting conformational & subdominant epitopes. Step 2. Engineered epitope: Epitope-specific antigens built to efficiently and selectively discover antibodies. Arrow from above between 2 & 3: RubrYc Library: AI-generated naive antibody library, free of sequence liabilities. Step 3. Humanized Antibody Hits:Epitope-specific mAbs processed through screening funnels to identify hits Step 4: Antibody Optimizer: AI-powered sequence optimization to improve performance. Step 5. Optimized mAb Lead Pool: Optimized Leads evaluated and ranked in translational disease models. Final: On-Epitope Clinical Candidate.

RubrYc Antibody Discovery Platform In Action

Flow chart: EGFRvII tumor specific epitope, engine generating epitopes, used in RubrYc Library. Patented epitope engineering engine generates conformational antigens for epitope-steered antibody discovery. Engineered epitopes are used to steer immunization and in vitro libraries.

Epitope-Steered Antibodies for Precision Immunotherapies

  1. Devol, Ross & Bedroussian, Armen & Yeo, Benjamin. (2022). The Global Biomedical Industry: Preserving U.S. Leadership.
  2. U.S. Patent No. 11,545,238 (issued January 3, 2023)