The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in the US has awarded a contract to AnaptysBio to generate antibodies to detect toxic substances and bio-terrorist threats.

Under the two-year, $1.5m contract, the company will use its somatic hypermutation (SHM) technology platform to produce high-affinity thermally stable antibodies for military applications and safety-related equipments.

Antibodies, an important component of biosensors, can sense toxic substances and are used to detect potential bio-terrorist threats.

AnaptysBio chairman and CEO Tom Smart said SHM has the potential to generate improved antibodies, which in turn can be used in biosensors with full retention of functionality.

“The results also may have applications within the pharmaceutical industry for more flexible and less costly formulation and storage requirements for therapeutic antibodies,” Smart said.