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Pharmaceuticals industry benefits from antibody sequence software

Copyright: Dr. Andrew C.R. Martin, Bioinf

Professor Andrew Martin and colleagues at UCL developed antibody sequence software abYsis, which is being used by more than 150 industry groups to analyse the sequences of amino acids that form antibodies, often as part of their drug development programmes. Antibodies can be tailored to identify and bind to specific targets, and pharmaceutical companies are interested in using them as the basis of new medicines.

Data breakout

14 Number of companies with a commercial licence for abYsis, as of 2018
1M Number of antibody sequences companies can produce per week
1/3 Proportion of new drugs in development that are based on antibodies
£161K Value of BBSRC follow-on funding for the research

The software arose from an industry-funded research project and has subsequently benefitted from BBSRC investment, including a BBSRC-funded studentship and follow-on funding.

Industry users range from small biotech firms to large multinational pharmaceutical companies. abYsis allows users to compare sequence data with that from public libraries of antibody sequences via a free-to-use web interface. Users can also buy software licences to use abYsis in-house. There are currently 14 licence-holders, and the income from these means abYsis is now largely self-funding.

Read the full impact evidence report:

Header image copyright: Bioinf: JavaScript Sequence Alignment Viewer(Martin, A.C.R. F1000Research 3(2014)249)