RELEASE: Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services Successfully Develops Highly Functional Ancient RNA Ligase

(Information sent by the signatory company).

RELEASE: Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services Successfully Develops Highly Functional Ancient RNA Ligase

(Information sent by the signatory company)

TOKYO, Feb. 22, 2023 /PRNewswire/ -- Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services ("Aji Bio-Pharma"), a leading provider of contract biopharmaceutical development and manufacturing services, is pleased to announce the development of a new enzyme for the formation of double-stranded oligonucleotides with high productivity.

In collaboration with researchers from Shizuoka University, Aji Bio-Pharma succeeded in developing a highly functional artificial RNA ligase using the ancient design method. This artificial RNA ligase was found to have higher thermostability than natural RNA ligase, as well as higher ligation activity for RNA fragments containing xenonucleic acid.

When natural RNA ligase for RNA fragments (including xenonucleic acid) is used as reaction substrates to synthesize a commercialized siRNA drug substance, the yield was only 20% after 24 hours of reaction. On the contrary, when the highly functional artificial RNA ligase was used, the reaction yield was improved to 80% under the same conditions, confirming that it has suitable properties for enzymatic synthesis of nucleic acid drugs. This approach achieves a more productive and environmentally safe oligonucleotide synthesis compared to the conventional method.

"We are excited to provide new research to our partners and support them in their efforts to deliver life-saving therapies," said Yusuke Hagiwara, senior researcher at Ajinomoto Bioscience.

The RNA fragments used as reaction substrates can be produced not only by conventional solid-phase synthesis, but also by AJIPHASE® technology from Ajinomoto Co., especially in large quantities and with high purity. This achievement is expected to be applied as one of the technologies enabling mass production of nucleic acid drugs with high efficiency and high purity. This result was presented in the journal "Environmental and Applied Microbiology" published by the American Society for Microbiology.

About Ajinomoto Co. and Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services

Based on the corporate message "Eat Well, Live Well", Ajinomoto Co., Inc. has been scientifically investigating the possibilities of amino acids to target future growth by creating new value through sustainable and innovative solutions for communities and the society. For additional information on Ajinomoto Co. (TYO: 2802), please visit

As its pharmaceutical arm, Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services is a fully integrated contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) with sites in Belgium, the United States, Japan, and India, offering end-to-end development, cGMP manufacturing, and aseptic fill-finishing services. for small and medium-sized companies. Large molecule and intermediate APIs. For more information on Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma's services, please visit

In addition, Ajinomoto Co. and Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services offer a broad range of innovative platform technologies and capabilities for preclinical and pilot programs in commercial quantities, including AJIPHASE® oligonucleotide manufacturing technology, CORYNEX® protein expression systems, and TALAMAX®, AJICAP ® site-specific binding and conjugation technologies for ADC and continuous flow manufacturing. For additional information on platform technologies, please visit

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