Filamentous phage M13 is a rod shaped non-lytic bacterial virus. M13 genetic material is used for many recombinant DNA processes, and the virus has also been studied for its uses in nanostructures and nanotechnology. The phage has been intensively studied for purposes of phage display and as a delivery vehicle for gene therapy. Phage display was first demonstrated with M13 bacteriophages and the filamentous phage remains a workhorse for this technology. Because of its typical size and rod shape it is considered as a challenging for purification. With large and highly interconnected pores monolithic chromatographic supports are also bridging that problem.
The ability to improve the purification process of M13 and other phages can have a significant impact on the market. By using phages for gene therapy, there will be a decrease in manufacturing time and production costs while enhancing the gene insertion. For phage display, a quicker method for phage purification will allow this powerful tool, which shortens the new drug discovery path and illuminates the basic interactions between different proteins, to be used with higher frequency.