Proprietary Hierotope® Platform
Our Hierotope platform enables us to design and engineer antibody-based biological product candidates, each of which binds to an epitope, which is a key component of a larger molecule known as an antigen. We are targeting epitopes that are composed of highly networked amino acids and that we believe are important for the function of the antigen. We refer to these specific epitopes, which we believe are highly attractive targets, as Hierotopes. The term Hierotope is derived from “hiero,” the Greek term for sacred, and “tope,” the Greek term for site. In the case of infectious diseases, we believe these Hierotopes are critical to the structural and functional integrity of the pathogen, are common across all strains of the pathogen and resistant to mutation. In the case of endogenous targets, we believe that these Hierotopes are critical for the biological activity of the target.

Visterra hierotope
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We utilize our proprietary computational tools and technologies, the core of which is our atomic interaction network analysis, or AIN analysis, to both identify Hierotopes and design and engineer antibody-based biological medicines to target these Hierotopes. Using our Hierotope platform, we deploy our AIN analysis to characterize each amino acid in a protein in terms of its interactions with other amino acids, resulting in the identification of the most interconnected ones. Once we identify the Hierotope, we develop a new antibody scaffold or select an antibody scaffold from an existing antigen-antibody database that best matches the Hierotope we are targeting. Finally, starting with an antibody scaffold, we deploy our AIN analysis to design and engineer an optimized antibody-based drug candidate that selectively targets the identified Hierotope.

As of 09/15/17
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