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Innovation Technology

ACROBiosystems went from start-up to top producer


Things have been moving quickly at ACROBiosystems. But while it’s often said that speed comes at the expense

Dr. Jae Sly

Dr. Jae Sly

of quality, the work being done by the company is decidedly first-rate and ahead of that done by competitors.
“In just a short amount of time, we have gone from a startup to being one of the top protein portfolio companies,” says Director of Strategic Business Development Jae Sly.

Sly, who has a Ph.D. in immunology and an MBA, was brought in by ACROBiosystems to expand its client base, something she has done, thanks to the company’s strong reputation for developing reliable proteins that can be used to create therapies to fight disease.

ACROBiosystems, which has offices in Newark and at the Delaware Innovation Space in Wilmington, was formed by Mike Chen in 2010 in Beijing. Three years later, he came to the U.S. and settled at the Delaware Technology Park. The company has 160 employees and also has offices in San Jose, St. Louis, Boston and Shanghai.

ACROBiosystems creates recombinant proteins that can be blended with other ingredients to create stable cell-line development. That is crucial as pharmaceutical companies vie to develop products that fight disease. Sly calls Chen “a cell culture specialist” and says he is on the “cutting edge.”

“If you’re looking at developing a target, you want to have very high-quality protein to use,” Sly says. “We are putting a lot more effort into making sure we analyze the protein properly.”

Most of the proteins ACROBiosystems creates are used in oncological treatments and involve immune checkpoint inhibitors that can help trigger the body’s ability to combat cancer cells. This is a significant area of focus in fighting the disease, and the company’s product line is helping generate some drugs used on many patients.

The future is definitely bright for ACROBiosystems, thanks to its high-quality product line, but also due to its status as the first business to occupy the Innovation Space. The company expects to develop collaborations with other firms across a variety of disciplines.

“The Innovation Space is really great,” Sly says. “I worked in Maryland in an incubator system, and when Mike Chen asked me to find a lab, I went to the Innovation Space. We were the first there, but it’s growing.

“We can offer other companies our capabilities and help expand their discovery. The interesting thing is that as we develop these partnerships outside our scope, we are bringing innovation to new customers and helping them pair technology and platforms together.”

And continuing ACROBiosystems’ high-quality growth.

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