Model Organism

Tetrahymena thermophila

A model organism well-known for decades

Cilian uses Ciliates of the species Tetrahymena for the production of therapeutic proteins. Tetrahymena is a micro organism which is living in inland waters as its natural habitat. Based on its specific features this microorganism has been used in basic bioscientific research for more than 50 years. Characteristic for this relative of the slipper animalcule (Paramecium) is the eyelash-like organelles or cilia, which evenly cover the surface of the approximately 50 μm large microorganism. Tetrahymena as model organism reached international reputation with the awarded Nobel Prize for its researchers. Twice in the past, 1989 (Chemistry) and 2009 (Physiology and Medicine) US scientists (Thomas Cech, Elizabeth Blackburn) were honored, along with their colleagues, for fundamental insights into certain functions of cell proliferation and protein biosynthesis.

The outstanding suitability for scientific investigations led to the fact that this model organism or “work horse” in bioscience, Tetrahymena, was placed by the US NIH on the list of genomes and was sequenced completely in 2006.
These outstanding characteristics predestine this model organism for biotechnological applications.

In consequence Cilian AG uses the Ciliate Tetrahymena (in the form of the CIPEX-System) as highly efficient production organism for the production of a flu vaccine, monoclonal antibodies and an enzyme preparation for the treatment of pancreatic insufficiency.