Bioanalysis Zone

Waters and Ferring collaborate to host Peptide Bioanalysis Forum

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A collaborative effort between Ferring and Waters Corporation, the proceedings kicked off with introductions by the organizers, Magnus Knutsson, Director of LC-MS/MS Bioanalysis at Ferring (Switzerland), and Diego Rodriquez-Calabeiro, Waters (MA, USA) DMPK Marketing Manager for Europe and India.

Attendees hailed from small and large pharma, biotech, CROs and from five universities across the region. Presentations from invited speakers represented both the pharma and CRO industries and focused on the bioanalysis of large therapeutic peptides and proteins, monoclonal antibodies and oligonucleotides as well. Highlighted technologies extended beyond traditional tandem quadrupole mass spectrometry to include the use of microfluidics, ion mobility and high resolution mass spectrometry. A prediction offered by one of the speakers was that HRMS, which has historically been used solely for qualitative analysis, will continue to gain acceptance in quantitative bioanalytical labs and may soon comprise as much as 20% of these labs’ instrumentation, especially with the newer, more sensitive HRMS instruments coming on the market today.

The 2nd day began with roundtable workshops focused on 3 main topic areas: Bioanalysis of Proteins & antibody-drug conjugates, Solutions for Further Improvements in Sensitivity and Handling of Small Sample Volumes. Groups rotated between three facilitators, Diego Rodriguez-Calabeiro, Magnus Knutsson and Erin Chambers, Principal Scientist from Waters, to discuss the challenges they face in these areas and the strategies they are employing to forge ahead. The majority of attendees came to the workshop with experience with bioanalysis of peptides, while others were relatively new to the area. Much discussion focused on measuring intact vs digested proteins, the use of immunoprecipitation in sample preparation, both general and specific, and the unmet need for instrumentation to support quantification of intact proteins and monoclonal antibodies, especially with the growing number of antibody-drug conjugates in development today. Many emphasized the need to bridge the gap between internal ligand binding assay and Mass Spectrometry groups so as to collaborate more effectively on method development in order to minimize redundancy.

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Attendees actively discussing during a workshop session.

The afternoon of Day 2 was led by Erin Chambers with a very practical delivery of guidelines for method development specific to peptides and proteins. Erin began this session by introducing the importance of ‘Understanding your Molecule’ and all of its associated properties in order to best optimize method parameters from the start. Erin supported her suggestions with concrete examples of methods developed by her team at Waters for the bioanalysis of insulin and its therapeutic analogues, teriparatide, desmopressin, and even larger proteins such as herceptin and infliximab, among others.

Response to the Peptide Bioanalysis Forum was exceptional, and individuals remarked at how helpful it was to share their ideas in such a collaborative environment amongst their peers. An enormous thank you to all who participated and to Ferring for being such gracious hosts.

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