Press releases
11 January 2022, Zwingenberg

BRAIN-Engineered-Cas (BEC) Considered a Patentable Technology

BRAIN Biotech AG received an international search report and a written opinion from the European Patent Office (EPO) as international searching authority (ISA). The favorable written opinion states that the BRAIN-Engineered-Cas (BEC) nucleases for which patent protection is sought under the Patent Corporation Treaty (PCT) with an earliest priority date of around 18 months ago are novel, are – with regard to the BEC nuclease sequences – inventive, are industrially applicable and are also not otherwise excluded from patent protection. Hence, the respective sequences of the BEC nucleases are considered patentable by the EPO.

This is a strong milestone in the regular patent filing process confirming the view of BRAIN’s management and scientific team that the proprietary BEC technology is a novel and clearly differentiated genome-editing tool. The patent application and the search report are expected to be published by the WIPO shortly after January 21st, 2022. After the publication the regular patent approval process including the opposition proceedings period after grant will take its course.
The BEC technology is already successfully employed today within the BioScience unit of the BRAIN Biotech AG in customer as well as own research projects. Its genome-editing capability has been proven in microorganisms which are important for industrial biotechnology applications and is currently developed for its additional application in plants and mammalian cells.

An addition to BEC, the company had announced the identification of around 2,000 so far untapped additional Class 2 CRISPR nucleases which have been identified in-silico and have the potential to be deployed for genome editing. With a focused investment approach BRAIN has analyzed a limited number in detail and already filed a first IP protection for 15 nucleases. As announced in December 2021, BMC01 is the first of these nucleases with proven functionality and demonstrated genome editing activities in microorganisms.

Lukas Linnig, CFO at BRAIN Biotech AG says: “The executive management and the scientific team have always been convinced that our proprietary genome-editing nuclease BEC is a differentiated and novel tool for the genome-editing industry. This position has been confirmed by the search report from the EPO and we now see BRAIN in a strong position to receive a granted patent at the end of the regular patent filing process. In addition, we continue to expand our proprietary toolset and scientific footprint in genome editing by researching and patenting further nucleases. BRAIN is clearly executing on its business plan to build a successful platform business in genome editing with significant economic potential.”


BRAIN Biotech AG is a leading European supplier of bio-based products and solutions such as enzymes and proteins, microbial production strains, natural compounds and biotechnological solutions for more sustainable industrial processes. The company focuses on the fields of nutrition, health and environment.

BRAIN Biotech AG is the parent company of the international BRAIN Biotech Group. The Group's business activities are divided into three segments: The BioProducts segment comprises the product business with specialty enzymes and other proteins, for which the Group operates fermentation facilities in the United Kingdom and production facilities in continental Europe and the United States. The BioScience segment offers research-intensive custom solutions based on enzyme technology, strain development, bioprocess development and natural product screening. The BioIncubator segment conducts its own R&D projects or those initiated with partners with high value-added potential. A particularly promising incubator project is the development of the Company's own CRISPR-based gene editing technology platform, which is currently being established and expanded by Akribion Genomics (in foundation planning).

Through its own R&D activities, BRAIN Biotech Group is continuously expanding its product portfolio in the field of specialty enzymes and small molecules. The latter are the starting point for screenings, e.g. for novel drug candidates for pharmaceutical applications.

BRAIN Biotech AG has been listed on the Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange since February 9, 2016 (ticker symbol: BNN; securities identification number: ISIN DE0005203947 / WKN 520394). The company employs approximately 330 people and generated revenues of EUR 55,3 million in the fiscal year 2022/23.

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This press release contains forward-looking statements. These statements reflect the current views, expectations, and assumptions of the management of BRAIN Biotech AG, and are based on information currently available to the management. Forward-looking statements are no guarantees of future performance, and entail both known and unknown risks as well as uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance or events to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such statements. Numerous factors exist that could influence the future performance of and future developments at BRAIN Biotech AG and the BRAIN Biotech Group. Such factors include, but are not limited to, changes in the general economic and competitive environment, risks associated with capital markets, currency exchange rate fluctuations, changes in international and national laws and regulations, in particular with respect to tax laws and regulations, as well as other factors. BRAIN Biotech AG does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements.

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