Cell biological research is often hampered by the lack of appropriate methods that allow the fast, synchronized and efficient delivery of proteins into eukaryotic cells. The most widely used technique is DNA transfection ultimately leading to expression of the desired protein. This results in a heterogeneous and unsynchronized cell population after an incubation time of 12-48 hours. Hence, the protein under study is often present for far longer than physiologically relevant or desirable.
T3 Pharmaceuticals has developed a proprietary technology that allows for fast and efficient protein delivery into eukaryotic cells using live bacteria. Our method is based on a bacterial protein delivery nanomachine that has the function to deliver bacterial proteins directly into eukaryotic host cells. We have genetically engineered bacteria to solely translocate proteins of choice into the eukaryotic cells. This approach allows a fast, synchronized, homogenous and efficient protein delivery into almost all available cell lines. Besides many potential applications in research use, protein delivery in vivo holds great therapeutic potential.
The technology has been published in The Journal for Cell Biology: “A bacterial type III secretion-based protein delivery tool for broad applications in cell biology”
(Ittig et al. 211 (4): 913, JCB, 2015)
The well-known bacterial preference to replicate at the site of solid tumors allows us to employ the bacteria as vehicle for delivery of therapeutic proteins into tumor cells. T3 Pharmaceuticals has developed and optimized a proprietary bacterial vehicle that has a strong preference to accumulate in solid tumors when administered from a distal site. At the site of the tumor, the bacteria are able to multiply while they get cleared by the immune system in healthy tissue. The accumulation of bacteria in tumor tissue in combination with the efficient delivery of therapeutic proteins forms the basis for the next generation cancer therapy.