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PhylloTech offers new plant protein production system, highlighted by National Science Foundation

PhylloTech, Inc. (Middleton, WI) announces that it has developed a new protein production system in plants, based on research funded by the National Science Foundation.  The company utilizes tobacco trichomes as continuous production factories that can secrete nearly pure proteins and antibodies to leaf surfaces.  The proprietary system can manufacture proteins and antibodies at a reduced cost compared to other systems.  See a recent NSF article highlighting the system here.

“Our continuous trichome production system is a new and alternative strategy for protein manufacturing, especially for antibodies and other targets that are expensive or difficult to make in other systems,” said Ryan Shepherd, co-founder and CEO.  “Our goal is to help customers realize protein targets in a more cost-sensitive way, with a robust system that is easier to scale and can avoid the tremendous capital costs associated with scalability.  Leaf trichomes are natural factories for protein purification, and our work has been focused on increasing their output as well as scale.  By utilizing bioengineered plants in this way, we believe we have developed a great system to help customers make antibodies and other proteins, therapeutic or otherwise, in a manner that could have broad reaching implications on the costs of these products.”

PhylloTech, Inc. was opened in 2010 at University Research Park (Madison, WI) by plant scientists and entrepreneurs Ryan Shepherd PhD and Colin Shepherd PhD, MBA, and is now based in a larger facility in Middleton, WI.  Since that time, the company has received over $2.4M in federal SBIR grants to perform R&D on difficult problems in plant biotechnology.   In addition to its protein production system in plants, the company is also developing novel antifungal and antibacterial biopesticides which are available for partnerships.

For more information and to contact PhylloTech, please visit