Astrazeneca plc has signed an agreement with liquid biopsy testing company Saga Diagnostics AB to develop dPCR assays. Lund, Sweden-based Saga Diagnostics will develop Sagasafe dPCR assays towards undisclosed methylated targets for analysis of tissue samples and liquid biopsies. The assay is part of Saga’s portfolio of “ultrasensitive technologies,” comprising Sagasign for personalized monitoring of cancer burden and minimal residual disease.
LONDON – Just nine months on from announcing the close of its $6.9 million seed round, Dunad Therapeutics Ltd. has landed a potential $1.3 billion deal with Novartis AG to discover and develop orally available protein degradation drugs. The cash is, of course, backend-loaded, but Dunad is getting a handy $24 million up-front payment and equity investment, and will receive full funding for the research.
DUBLIN – Novadip SA raised €19 million (US$22.1 million) in a first close of a series B round to progress its autologous bone regeneration therapy, NVD-003, on either side of the Atlantic. The company is also working on an allogeneic regenerative approach, which is still preclinical.
The EMA and the EU Heads of Medicines Agencies are launching a pilot project to support not-for-profit organizations and academia in the repurposing of an authorized drug for a new indication in an area of public health interest.
LONDON – Four decades of academic research at the University of California, San Francisco, is to be translated through to the clinic with funding from a €1 million (US$1.2 million) European Commission grant. The money, awarded to a Dutch/German consortium will fund the generation and optimization of antibodies designed to neutralize oxidized phospholipids that mediate inflammatory changes in a swathe of diseases. The consortium that won the Eurostars award is led by Oxitope Pharma BV.
LONDON – A U.K. study following up 32.5 million people for 28 days after their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine has shown an increased risk of hemorrhagic stroke after receiving the Pfizer Inc./Biontech SE product, and confirmed case reports of an increased risk of developing Guillain-Barré syndrome after the Astrazeneca plc vaccine.
LONDON – The U.K. Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has designated an offspring of the Delta variant of SARS-CoV-2 as a “variant under investigation” after uncovering some early evidence it may have an increased growth rate.
LONDON – A new National Security Act coming into force on Jan. 4, 2022, will extend the U.K. government’s power to scrutinize and intervene in foreign acquisitions and bring a swathe of domestic life sciences companies within the ambit of national security legislation for the first time.
DUBLIN – Sofinnova Partners closed out its flagship Capital X fund at €472 million (US$550 million), providing further evidence that private equity investing in European biotechnology and medical technology remains in rude health. It represents, managing partner Graziano Seghezzi told BioWorld, one of the most successful fundraising campaigns in its 30-year history. “We went out and raised this fund in six months.”