HONG KONG – Rapt Therapeutics Inc., of San Francisco, and Seoul, South Korea-based Hanmi Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. entered a license agreement for Rapt’s FLX-475 in Asia. FLX-475 is an oral, small-molecule CCR4 antagonist for cancer treatment.
Targeting prostate cancer (PCa) neuroendocrine (NE) cells via inhibition of the C-X-C motif chemokine receptor 2 (CXCR2) is an androgen receptor (AR)-independent therapeutic strategy that can improve the efficacy of treatment for PCa, a leading cause of male cancer mortality.
BEIJING – EOC Pharmaceutical Group, of Shanghai, completed a series C financing round, bagging $71 million to advance its lead programs EOC-103 and EOC-315 for breast and gastric cancers. The round was led by Hangzhou Tigermed Consulting Co. Ltd. and its affiliated funds, TF Capital and Yingke PE. Hanne Capital and Everest Venture Capital also participated in the round. In 2017, EOC raised $32 million in a series B round. All funding participants are China-based.
HONG KONG – Seoul, South Korea-based GI Innovation Inc. has licensed to Nanjing, Jiangsu-based Simcere Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. rights to its immunotherapy drug candidate, G1-101, a bispecific CD80/interleukin2 (IL-2) variant fusion protein.
SINGAPORE – Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. presented new findings from its phase III ALTA-1L trial evaluating its Alunbrig (brigatinib) vs. crizotinib in adults with advanced anaplastic lymphoma kinase-positive (ALK+) non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC) who had not received a prior ALK inhibitor, showing Alunbrig reduced the risk of disease progression or death by 76% after more than two years of follow-up.
BEIJING – Beijing-based Chinese biotech giant Beigene Ltd. said Brukinsa (zanubrutinib) won accelerated FDA approval to treat adults with mantle cell lymphoma (MCL) who received at least one prior therapy. This is the first China-discovered innovative cancer drug to win FDA clearance. Beigene said Brukinsa is the only FDA-approved BTK inhibitor shown to deliver 100% median occupancy in peripheral blood cells. It is also the only BTK inhibitor that can be taken once or twice daily. Brukinsa is expected to be launched in the U.S. in the coming weeks.
When the time was right to make a powerful Western biotech welcome in China, Beigene Ltd. was ready when Amgen Inc. came calling. Its massive $2.7 billion cash equity investment in Beigene buys Amgen an oncology footprint in China.
HONG KONG – I-Mab Biopharma (Shanghai) Co. Ltd. has received IND approval from China's National Medical Products Administration (NMPA) for its CD73 antibody, getting the go-ahead for a phase I/II trial of TJD-5 in patients with advanced solid tumors.
HONG KONG – Singapore's Aslan Pharmaceuticals Ltd. and South Korea's Bukwang Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. have jointly established a new company dedicated to the development of aryl hydrocarbon receptor (AhR) drug candidates. Named Jaguahr Therapeutics Pte. Ltd. – the unusual spelling a clear reference to "AhR" – it will be based in Singapore and will focus on developing immuno-oncology therapeutics for global markets based on the preclinical AhR antagonists in Aslan's early stage pipeline.