Developing the IVIG biomimetic, Hexa-Fc, for drug and vaccine applications

Daniel M. Czajkowsky, Jan Terje Andersen, Anja Fuchs, Timothy J. Wilson, David Mekhaiel, Marco Colonna, Jianfeng He, Zhifeng Shao, Daniel A. Mitchell, Gang Wu, Anne Dell, Stuart Haslam, Katy A. Lloyd, Shona C. Moore, Inger Sandlie, Patricia A. Blundell, Richard J. Pleass

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


The remarkable clinical success of Fc-fusion proteins has driven intense investigation for even more potent replacements. Using quality-by-design (QbD) approaches, we generated hexameric-Fc (hexa-Fc), a ∼20 nm oligomeric Fc-based scaffold that we here show binds low-affinity inhibitory receptors (FcRL5, FcγRIIb, and DC-SIGN) with high avidity and specificity, whilst eliminating significant clinical limitations of monomeric Fc-fusions for vaccine and/or cancer therapies, in particular their poor ability to activate complement. Mass spectroscopy of hexa-Fc reveals high-mannose, low-sialic acid content, suggesting that interactions with these receptors are influenced by the mannose-containing Fc. Molecular dynamics (MD) simulations provides insight into the mechanisms of hexa-Fc interaction with these receptors and reveals an unexpected orientation of high-mannose glycans on the human Fc that provides greater accessibility to potential binding partners. Finally, we show that this biosynthetic nanoparticle can be engineered to enhance interactions with the human neonatal Fc receptor (FcRn) without loss of the oligomeric structure, a crucial modification for these molecules in therapy and/or vaccine strategies where a long plasma half-life is critical.

Original languageEnglish
Article number9526
JournalScientific reports
StatePublished - Apr 27 2015


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