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.”