Unlocking the power of Dynamic Single-Molecule and Cell Avidity analysis

At LUMICKS, our goal is to improve human health by unlocking the power of Dynamic Single–Molecule and Cell Avidity analysis. We empower researchers with tools that provide unparalleled insight into the fundamental cause of disease and potential for drug optimization. With the rate of progress in biological research accelerating exponentially, the need to understand how biological processes occur at a molecular level is becoming increasingly important.

LUMICKS addresses pivotal research trends towards smaller scale and functional analysis at an advanced level, facilitating a new type of understanding.

What causes DNA repair to malfunction in the process that leads to breast cancer?

How does the energy landscape of a particular protein cause the misfolding that leads to Alzheimer’s?

How can we find the right T Cell out of thousands, that recognized and attacks the tumor cell?

These are just a few of the challenges that motivate our customers and have inspired us to push boundaries through the development of our current product range.

Focused on Driving the Adoption of DSM in Molecular Research

LUMICKS is the world-leader in Dynamic Single-Molecule analysis (“DSM”) and is focused on establishing this breakthrough approach as a standard analytical method in molecular biology and drug discovery. We achieve this through the increasingly rapid adoption by scientific KOLs and publications by early adopters, as well as through our growing pharma customer base.

With a complementary and growing product line, LUMICKS is well positioned to capitalize on the market opportunity for this technology across the academic and pharma segments.

Dynamic Single-Molecule analysis explained

All biological processes ultimately take place at the molecular level, all diseases arise at this level, and practically all drugs act at this level. Thus, there is an immense need to understand how these molecular interactions take place.

The challenge is that all current life science tools working at a molecular level either measure static structure or average binding kinetics; the crucial and often very complex mechanistic details of the underlying dynamic process of protein interactions are not revealed. Dynamic Single-Molecule analysis reveals these details.

The unique ability to combine live imaging, manipulation and force-displacement measurement with Angstrom precision, provides single-protein imaging resolution and base pair resolution of molecular conformational changes. Taken together, this gives the crucial dynamic and functional mechanistic information that is complementary to protein structure (Crystallography) and ensemble average kinetics (SPR).

The dynamic process of DNA Replication at the single-molecule scale. Credits: Originally created by DNA Learning Center for www.dnai.org.

Cell avidity analysis explained

In the last few years, the onset of immunotherapy has begun to change the landscape of medicine. The key parameter in determining the effectiveness of immunotherapies is the overall strength of interaction, the Avidity, between an immune cell and its target. This is also key for the development and application of effective immune therapies.

However, cell-cell avidity is a complex combination of many interactions between receptors, antigens, co-factors etc. And the combined interaction forces could not be directly measured to date. Gold-standard technologies, like SPR, only measure the affinity of a molecular interaction, while Tetramer-stained Flow Cytometry can measure the abundance of, say, a certain receptor.

Now with LUMICKS’ z-Movi™, the Cell-Cell avidity can be measured directly, in a label-free and high-throughput way.

How does this work?

In the z-Movi chip, thousands of tumour cells are cultured on the surface. Then a population of, for example, T cells are flown in – with tens of thousands – and incubated for a set time. After the incubation period, a uniform acoustic force field is applied inside the chip and the bound T cells are pulled off the tumor cells with a controlled, calibrated force, which is gradually increased. By image analysis the instrument accurately tracks the number of tumor-bound cells that release, resulting in a histogram showing the avidity distribution of the t cell population. Not only is the avidity measured for each individual T cell in this population of tens of thousands in parallel, but also the T cells can be sorted according to their avidity. This effectively provides the first instrument that can screen and sort immune cells based on their true avidity, in a high-throughput and label-free manner.

A selection of academic research sites that have adopted LUMICKS technology

ShanghaiTech University

C-Trap™, m-Trap™

Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics

C-Trap™

FOM Institute AMOLF

C-Trap™

Rockefeller University

C-Trap™

Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

m-Trap™

Johns Hopkins University

C-Trap™, AFS™

University of Zurich

C-Trap™

Georgetown University

AFS™

University of California, Berkeley

C-Trap™ SR, u-flux™

University of Göttingen

C-Trap™

Environmental, Social, Governance

LUMICKS is committed to preserving the environment for future generations through minimizing our environmental footprint. We design our products for low energy consumption, our employees fly CO2 neutral, and we transport our systems in reusable crates.

We are proud of our diverse and multi-cultural team from all corners of the world. Our strong company culture is characterized by the passion, creativity, openness, ownership, and customer orientated approach of our smart and motivated team.

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