Friday, 12 August 2011 20:21

Genotype of CHO Cells Sequenced Featured

In the 1960s CHO cells from the ovaries of the Chinese hamster were isolated and cultivated. These cell cultures are important production strains for the pharmaceutical industry. Now, for the first time, the genotype of a CHO strain has been sequenced.

Chinese Hamster Ovary cells (CHO cells) are used by the pharmaceutical industry world-wide for the production of biotechnologically produced drugs. Now, a collaborative research team from Denmark, the United States and China has sequenced a CHO cell strain (type K1) completely. They identified more than 24,000 genes, 83 per cent of which could be assigned a protein via database searches. These results are considered important as they are likely to be very helpful in optimising the production process and yield of therapeutic proteins.

But this latest strain CHO-K1 differs in many details from the strains which are used for industrial production because the gene sequences of the latter are modified by gene technique methods for in- house purposes. For this reason, the published data will only supply hints to the industry as to how they can modify CHO cells better for their own requirements.