News

Cancer vaccine plus checkpoint inhibitor extends survival

Wednesday 2 March 2022
Country
Netherlands

New data on a prospective vaccine for human papillomavirus type 16 (HPV-16)-induced cancers has demonstrated efficacy in combination with the checkpoint inhibitor nivolumab (Opdivo), ISA Pharmaceuticals BV announced on 1 March. The vaccine, ISA101b, consists of synthetic long peptides that are specific to the E6 and E7 proteins on the virus. These proteins play an important role in HPV-induced cancers.

RSV vaccine study in pregnant women stopped

Wednesday 2 March 2022
Country
United Kingdom

Three Phase 3 studies in pregnant women of a candidate vaccine designed to prevent infection from the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) have been stopped following a safety signal. The developer, GlaxoSmithKline Plc, announced a pause in the studies on 18 February and a halt 10 days later. The decision was based on an observation from the study’s independent data monitoring committee during a routine safety assessment. The safety observation wasn’t disclosed. Altogether, the three studies were scheduled to enrol 21,462 individuals, according to clinicaltrials.com.

TargED raises €39 million for thrombolytic therapy

Tuesday 1 March 2022
Country
Netherlands

A Dutch biotech company, founded in 2020, has raised €39 million in Series A financing to accelerate development of a preclinical compound that targets blood clots in order to treat acquired thrombotic thrombocytopenia purpura (aTTP) and acute ischaemic stroke. TargED Biopharmaceuticals BV is a spin-out of the University Medical Center in the Netherlands. Its top management all have experience in blood disorders.

Date set for GSK demerger

Tuesday 1 March 2022
Country
United Kingdom

GlaxoSmithKline Plc is to execute the demerger of its consumer division in July, creating two new public companies one of which will supply products to the global consumer healthcare market. The other will be a new version of the current GSK, only tightly focused on innovative biopharmaceuticals and vaccines.

EyeBiotech raises finance for ocular treatments

Monday 28 February 2022
Country
United Kingdom

A UK company founded in August 2021 to build a portfolio of new treatments for ocular diseases has raised $65 million in a Series financing round. EyeBiotech Ltd was co-founded by David Guyer and Anthony Adamis, two experienced opthalmologists. The financing was co-led by Jeito Capital, Samsara BioCapital and SV Health Investors, which also provided the new company with seed funding and helped recruit the leadership team.

BioNTech strengthens position in engineered cell therapies

Tuesday 22 February 2022
Country
Germany

BioNTech SE has entered a three-year collaboration with Medigene AG to develop immunotherapies against solid tumours using Medigene’s proprietary T cell receptor (TCR) technology. This technology involves engineering a patient’s own T cells in order to display receptors that can recognise specific cancer antigens. Under the agreement, Medigene’s TCR discovery platform will be used in the development of cancer therapies against tumour targets nominated by BioNTech.

Dupixent study in urticaria stopped

Monday 21 February 2022
Country
France

A Phase 3 trial of Dupixent (dupilumab) in patients with chronic spontaneous urticaria has failed to meet its primary endpoints and is being stopped early, Sanofi SA announced on 18 February. Dupixent is a widely prescribed medicine for asthma and atopic dermatitis and is being investigated for a possible new indication in urticaria, a chronic inflammatory skin disease characterised by the sudden onset of hives.

US Senate confirms Califf

Saturday 19 February 2022
Country
United States

The US Senate has confirmed President Joe Biden’s nomination of Robert Califf to be head of the Food and Drug Administration – a position he held during the final year of the Obama administration. The vote was 50 to 46, the narrowest margin of any confirmed FDA commissioner.

Oxford Biomedica gets manufacturing presence in US

Saturday 19 February 2022
Country
United Kingdom

UK-based Oxford Biomedica Plc is to establish a gene therapy manufacturing presence in the US under a new agreement with Homology Medicines Inc, a clinical-stage genetics medicines company located near Boston, US. Homology has experience in the development and use of adeno-associated virus (AAV) vectors while Oxford Biomedica has a lentiviral vector delivery platform.

Intellia acquires Rewrite Therapeutics

Saturday 19 February 2022
Country
United States

Intellia Therapeutics Inc has taken steps to advance its genome editing technology with the acquisition of Rewrite Therapeutics Inc. Intellia will pay Rewrite shareholders $45 million upfront and an additional $155 million and research and regulatory milestones through a mix of Intellia stock and cash. Further financial details were not disclosed.