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Emerging Startup

Evasion of the Innate Immune Response for AAV Gene Therapy

AAV capsid

A startup emerging from George Church's lab intends to develop uniquely enabled gene therapy products, using technologies that enable AAV to evade the innate immune response. (Image credit: Protein Data Bank / 1LP3.)

In the last 20 years, DNA and RNA therapy development has surged. Overcoming or escaping the host innate immune response is a large challenge for the widespread adoption of nucleic-acid therapies. George Church's lab has developed proprietary genome-based technologies to improve the safety and efficacy of such therapies by allowing AAV to evade the innate immune response. Studies in vitro and in vivo have demonstrated that by reducing this early innate immune response, this technology can profoundly reduce downstream toxicity and increase gene expression by up to 10x. Ally Therapeutics, a startup emerging from the Church Lab, intends to develop uniquely enabled gene therapy products using this technology and partner with other industry leaders.

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