Deals and Financings
Eddingpharm in-licensed greater-China rights to a novel osteoporosis treatment from Ablynx [BR: ABLX], a Belgium biopharma. The drug candidate, ALX-0141, is an anti-RANKL nanobody that has successfully completed a Phase I double-blind trial. Eddingpharma paid $2.7 million upfront, plus it will make additional milestone payments and pay royalties up to 20%, based on sales. Eddingpharm will also underwrite clinical development of the molecule in greater China.
Dance Biopharm, a US biotech, will form a joint venture with Harmony Asset of Hong Kong to jointly develop Dance's second-generation inhaled insulin, a clinical-stage product. The JV will own rights to Adagio™ in China and other Asian countries with the exception of Japan. Harmony will be responsible for most of the development expenses in each country. It will receive proportionate ownership in those territories depending on its contribution. Dance said the JV will expedite its China efforts, which will include more partnerships.
Miraculins (TSX-V: MOM), a Canadian maker of non-invasive diagnostic tests, signed a Letter of Intent to sell China rights for a diabetes test to Cachet Pharma (SHE: 002462), a China drug distributor. Miraculins acquired rights to the SCOUT DS® technology less than two months ago. SCOUT is a non-invasive test that measures changes in a person's skin to indicate prediabetes and diabetes type 2.
WuXi PharmaTech (NYSE: WX), China's largest CRO, reported that its Shanghai genomics clinical laboratory was certified by the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services as compliant with Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) standards (see story). WuXi said its laboratory is the only CLIA-certified clinical laboratory in China, allowing WuXi to perform gene sequencing projects as part of a clinical trial.
Mark Reilly, the former head of GlaxoSmithKline (NYSE: GSK) in China, is back in China and has been asked not to leave the country (see story). According to GSK, he has been "helping" the police investigate the alleged bribery practices in Changsha. Earlier, China authorities said GSK may have spent up to $489 million on bribing doctors and government officials.
CardioKinetix, a California medical device company, said two patients in China have received implants of the company's catheter-based treatment for heart failure. The Parachute® Ventricular Partitioning Devices were implanted in Beijing. CardioKinetix said the surgeries were a step towards bringing the product to China and the world, though it will have to be approved by the CFDA before it begins wide-spread distribution in the PRC.