Drug-like antibodies by design and directed evolution

Speaker Details:

Peter Tessier
Albert M. Mattocks Professor of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Chemical Engineering
University of Michigan at Ann Arbor

Lecture Details:

April 19, 2018
12:30-1:20 p.m.
Foege N130A, Wallace H. Coulter Seminar Room


The biotech industry has seen an explosion in the development of therapeutic antibodies in the last decade, and today most of the best selling drugs are monoclonal antibodies. The advantages of antibodies as therapeutics – namely their high affinity, specificity, potency, stability, manufacturability and low toxicity – are compelling. Nevertheless, there are many fundamental challenges associated with antibody discovery and development that require key technical advances in order to improve the rational and efficient generation of potent antibody therapeutics. I will discuss our progress in addressing some of these fundamental challenges, including the design, evolution, selection and characterization of drug-like antibodies with high affinity, specificity, stability and solubility.

Speaker Bio:

Peter Tessier is the Albert M. Mattocks (Endowed) Professor in the Departments of Chemical Engineering, Pharmaceutical Sciences and Biomedical Engineering, and a member of the Biointerfaces Institute at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, MI. He received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Maine (1998, Co-Valedictorian), and his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the University of Delaware (2003, NASA Graduate Fellow). Tessier performed his postdoctoral studies at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research at MIT (2003-2007, American Cancer Society Fellow). Tessier started his independent career as an
assistant professor in the Department of Chemical & Biological Engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in 2007, and he was an endowed full professor at Rensselaer (Richard Baruch M.D. Career Development Professor) prior to moving to the University of Michigan in 2017.
Tessier’s research focuses on designing, optimizing, characterizing and formulating a class of large therapeutic proteins (antibodies) that hold great potential for detecting and treating human disorders ranging from cancer to Alzheimer’s disease. He has received a number of awards in recognition of his pioneering work: Pew Scholar Award in Biomedical Sciences (2010-2014), Humboldt Fellowship for Experienced Researchers (2014-2015), Young Scientist Award from the World Economic Forum (2014), Biochemical Engineering Journal Young
Investigator Award (2016), Young Investigator Award from the Biochemical Technology division of the American Chemical Society (2015), National Science Foundation CAREER Award (2010-2015), Rensselaer Early Career Award (2012), and Rensselaer School of Engineering Research (2012) and Teaching (2013) Awards.