Headquartered in South San Francisco (California, United States), GigaGen, a subsidiary of Grifols, is advancing transformative antibody drugs for immune deficiency, infectious diseases and checkpoint resistant cancers by leveraging industry-leading, single-cell technologies.
GigaGen’s novel technology platforms uniquely capture and recreate complete immune repertoires as functional antibody libraries. This approach has enabled the creation of first-in-class recombinant polyclonal antibody therapies for the treatment of infectious diseases, including GigaGen’s lead asset GIGA-2050 for COVID-19, which contains more than 12,000 anti-coronavirus antibodies.
GigaGen’s lead oncology asset, GIGA-564, is an anti-CTLA-4 monoclonal antibody that has demonstrated improved anti-tumor efficacy in vivo through a unique mechanism of action.
GigaGen is leveraging its proprietary technology platforms for the continued discovery of novel recombinant polyclonal drugs and monoclonal antibodies to treat life-threatening diseases.
Board of Directors
David S. Johnson, Ph.D., MBA
Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, GigaGen
Chief Operating Officer, GigaGen
David Ian Bell
Chief Innovation Officer, Grifols
Sr. Attorney, Osborne Clarke
Charles “Chuck” Wilson, Ph.D.
CEO, Unum Therapeutics
Mark Robbins, Ph.D., J.D.
Steve Chamow, Ph.D.
Bryan Monroe, Ph.D.
James Crowe, M.D.
Infectious Disease Advisor and Professor (Vanderbilt)
Ron Levy, M.D.
Oncology Advisor and Professor (Stanford)
In the News
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Biotech Showase™ 2018: David S. Johnson, Ph.D., MBA, Chief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, GigaGen, speaks to SCRIP about the company’s pipeline and business strategy.
Tech Nation with Moira Gunn: Recombinant Polyclonal Antibody Therapy for COVID-19
Moira Gunn from Tech Nation Radio discusses with GigaGen CEO Dave Johnson the company’s recombinant polyclonal antibody therapy in development to treat patients with COVID-19 in Episode 20-28: Antibodies, Antibodies, the More, the Better. July 8, 2020.
Empowered Patient with Karen Jagoda | New IVIG Therapies to Treat Primary Immune Deficiencies
Karen Jagoda from the Empowered Patient Podcast discusses with GigaGen CEO Dave Johnson the company’s recombinant intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) therapy in development to treat patients with primary immune deficiencies and its potential to overcome limitations of current IVIG plasma-based therapies. March 4, 2020.
PEGS Boston 2018 | Discovery of High-Affinity Human PD-1 and LAG-3 Antibodies
Cambridge Healthtech Institute’s Kent Simmons recently spoke with Dr. David Johnson, CEO of GigaGen, about his upcoming presentation “Discovery of High-Affinity Human PD-1 and LAG-3 Antibodies Using Novel Microfluidic and Molecular Genomic Methods”, to be delivered in the Engineering Antibodies meeting at the 2018 PEGS Boston. PEGS is scheduled for April 30 – May 4, 2018 in Boston, with the antibodies program set for May 2-3.
Everyone is made up of trillions of single cells, which all have unique properties.
Understanding this extraordinary diversity would help to better understand disease and develop effective drugs. However, conventional research methods and technologies have only scratched the surface of this complexity.
GigaGen’s platform technologies significantly increase the productivity and speed of target and drug discovery, quickly filling a growing pipeline of transformative antibody drugs.
The Surge Platform: Transformative Drugs, Faster
Surge captures and recreates complete antibody repertoires as recombinant antibody libraries, encompassing nearly 100% of the diversity within natural antibody libraries. Surge is a unique combination of single-cell emulsion droplet microfluidics technology, genomics, and protein library engineering. This technology enables production of recombinant polyclonals derived from mammalian repertoires. Surge also replaces conventional drug discovery technologies such as hybridomas and phage display, enabling a wide spectrum of drug candidates, including rare antibodies with potentially unique profiles.
Surge is recognized by patents issued in the U.S. and Europe, as well as 16 grants from the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation.
The Magnify Platform: Discovering Novel Oncology Targets
With Magnify, we profile tens of thousands of individual cells from tumor responders and non-responders, enabling identification of rare novel targets within the complex tumor microenvironment.
Magnify integrates patented, single-cell emulsion droplet microfluidics technology, massively parallel RNA sequencing and machine learning to identify genes that are associated with response or non-response. Drug targets discovered with Magnify are then fed into GigaGen’s Surge platform for the discovery of lead antibodies that target them.
GigaGen is using novel single-cell technologies to discover and develop antibody therapies to treat life-threatening diseases.
Modulating the Tumor Microenvironment
Antibodies and Bi-functional Molecules with Differentiated Anti-tumor Mechanisms
Immuno-oncology is a rapidly growing field of cancer treatment based on understanding the body’s immune response to cancer. This knowledge has produced highly effective monoclonal antibody cancer drugs, such as nivolumab (Opdivo) and ipilimumab (Yervoy).
GigaGen has used its single-cell technologies to better understand immune response to tumors. Based on this research, GigaGen has selected the most promising targets for modulating the tumor microenvironment. For each target, we have identified novel clinical candidates with validated activity in mouse models.
Our leading programs focus on two clinically validated targets, CTLA-4 and PD-L1. Our antibody drug candidates present unique profiles and have the potential to translate into more effective therapies with reduced toxicity.
- Anti-CTLA-4: GIGA-564
An anti-CTLA-4 antibody that specifically depletes regulatory T cells in the tumor microenvironment, but does not block binding of CTLA-4 to B7 ligands, potentially providing superior efficacy and reduced toxicity.
- Bi-specific anti-PD-L1 x Anti-TGF-β
A bi-specific anti-PD-L1 x Anti-TGF-β antibody that activates immune cells and enhances immune cell infiltration into the tumor microenvironment, potentially providing a durable response in late stage cancer.
Recombinant Polyclonal Drugs
The World’s First Recombinant Polyclonal Drugs
We are advancing the first recombinant polyclonal antibody therapies for the treatment of infectious disease and transplant rejection, disorders that are currently treated with polyclonals derived from human or animal plasma. Polyclonal therapies are ideal for diseases that comprise many targets, for example, viruses that are best neutralized by a drug that binds multiple epitopes. Our candidates are engineered to be more potent, and therefore potentially more efficacious, than plasma-derived products. In addition, our candidates overcome the limitations inherent to existing products, which are subject to plasma supply shortages, variability from batch-to-batch, and risk for contamination from unwanted artifacts such as clotting factors.
- GIGA-2050 – Recombinant Anti-Coronavirus Immunoglobulin (rCIG):
Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has caused hundreds of thousands of deaths and has devastated the world economy in 2020. Our approach to address the pandemic is to copy and re-create complete antibody repertoires of those who have recovered from COVID-19, specifically those who present a robust antibody response, and turn them into a drug that provides passive immunity to those severely ill or at high risk. We capture millions-diverse DNA libraries from B cell repertoires from convalescent human donors. These DNA libraries are then used to produce a recombinant polyclonal antibody product for treatment of severe COVID-19.
Unlike monoclonal antibodies, GigaGen’s recombinant anti-coronavirus immunoglobulin (rCIG), GIGA-2050, binds to a variety of viral epitopes, which may increase clinical efficacy. If novel virus variants arise, polyclonal antibodies are more likely to remain efficacious due to their binding diversity. Unlike plasma or serum polyclonal antibody methods, GigaGen only requires a few donors to generate enough product to treat millions of people.
- Recombinant IVIg:
Immune deficiencies are characterized by the body’s inability to properly make antibodies. Since antibodies are required to fight infection, patients with immune deficiencies are susceptible to recurrent and severe infections caused by viruses and bacteria that healthy people naturally fight off. Patients with immune deficiency are treated with intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg), an antibody product derived from the plasma of thousands of human donors.
GigaGen’s recombinant IVIg replicates the antibody diversity of healthy vaccinated donors against selected common diseases. It is made by capturing millions-diverse DNA libraries from B cell repertoires from healthy, vaccinated human donors. These libraries are engineered into mammalian cells to re-create recombinant polyclonal antibody protein products. We have validated the purified, massively polyclonal protein products with in vitro and mouse models.
GigaGen’s recombinant IVIg has less risk of contamination, is not subject to plasma supply shortages, and is highly consistent from batch-to-batch. In addition, recombinant IVIg is engineered for higher potency than plasma-derived products.
- Recombinant Human ATG:
During kidney transplant anti-thymocyte globulin (ATG) is used with other medications to prevent and treat transplant rejection. ATG is a plasma-based polyclonal typically derived from rabbit plasma, and therefore composed of rabbit antibodies.
We are developing a recombinant human ATG for kidney transplant rejection as an alternative to rabbit plasma derived ATG. Our recombinant product is more consistent from batch-to-batch, contains human antibodies and therefore is less immunogenic than rabbit ATG, and has the potential to provide improved efficacy with a less frequent dosing regimen.
GigaGen partners with leading academic and biopharmaceutical researchers to advance antibody-driven drug discovery and development programs for cancer, immune deficiency and other serious health conditions.
Grifols and GigaGen entered into a $50 million polyclonal antibody co-development agreement in July 2017. Grifols is a world leader in production of polyclonal antibody drugs.
Trianni and GigaGen entered into a co-discovery contract for immuno-oncology antibody drugs. Trianni has the leading chimeric human mouse for generation of fully human antibodies.
Stanford and GigaGen have entered into a research contract to study immune responses to serious disease, including cancer and transplantation. Stanford is one of the world’s leading private research institutions.
GigaGen is a fast-growing biopharmaceutical company with a mission to make a difference in the way life-changing medicines are discovered and developed. We’re die-hard innovators who aren’t afraid to shake things up in the name of progress. The strength and diversity of our team is paramount to our continued success. Please explore our career opportunities or contact us if you’re ready to make an impact.