Agilent Technologies Inc. (NYSE: A) today announced that Ram Sasisekharan, Ph.D., has received an Agilent Thought Leader Award in recognition of his contributions in the field of biologics characterization.

A more efficient development of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), against novel cancer targets and emerging pathogens (such as pandemic influenza, Ebola virus, Zika virus, and multi-drug resistant bacteria) is becoming critical, as the typical timeframe to develop these biopharmaceuticals from discovery to human clinical trials can be up to several years.

This Agilent Thought Leader Award will help Dr. Sasisekharan and his lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Boston, continue to evolve their radically different approach that aims to shorten the development time between product 'design' to the clinic. The proposed approach represents a new paradigm, characterizing and optimizing both the product and the process in a highly rich, parallel and multilayered fashion.

Agilent's 6545XT AdvanceBio LC/Q-TOF System, AssayMAP Bravo Platform (sample preparation solution), 1260 Infinity II Bio-Inert LC System combined with the 1290 Infinity II LC System, and MassHunter software will be used to help enable this new paradigm.  The Sasisekharan team will focus on the advancement of analytical techniques for mAb characterization to explore the utilization of critical quality attribute measurements, earlier in the clone selection and drug development process, as a strategy to bring biologics to market faster.

"I am gratified by this honor and pleased that Agilent has stepped up to support our ongoing work in the area of biopharmaceutical characterization and development" said Dr. Sasisekharan, who is Alfred H. Caspary Professor of Biological Engineering & Health Sciences and Technology, in the Department of Bioengineering at the Koch Institute for Cancer Research at MIT.

"We are very excited to be working with Dr. Sasisekharan and the entire team at MIT on these innovative methods and approaches. Fundamentally improving the biopharmaceutical development process and timelines will ultimately result in more effective therapies being available sooner," said Todd Christian, general manager of Agilent's Cell Analysis Division, and executive sponsor of this award.

The Agilent Thought Leader Award promotes fundamental scientific advances by contributing financial support, products, and expertise to the research of influential thought leaders in the life sciences, diagnostics and applied chemical markets. Information about previous award recipients is available on the Agilent Thought Leader Award webpage.