Selecta Biosciences and Sanofi Sign Global Collaboration to Develop Antigen-Specific Immunotherapies for up to Three Allergy Indications Based on Selecta's Synthetic Vaccine Particle Technology

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Selecta Biosciences and Sanofi Sign Global Collaboration to Develop Antigen-Specific Immunotherapies for up to Three Allergy Indications Based on Selecta's Synthetic Vaccine Particle Technology

  • Collaboration starts with immunotherapy for life-threatening food allergies
  • Novel therapies engineered to produce immune tolerance for two additional antigens to abate allergic immune response in people with severe allergies

Watertown, Mass. – November 28, 2012 – Selecta Biosciences, Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing a new class of synthetic vaccines and immunotherapies, today announced that it has entered into a strategic global collaboration with Sanofi (EURONEXT: SAN and NYSE: SNY) to discover highly targeted, antigen-specific immunotherapies for life-threatening allergies. Under the agreement, Sanofi obtains an exclusive license to develop an immunotherapy designed to abate acute immune responses against a life threatening food allergen and an option to develop two additional candidate immunotherapies for allergies each to a specific food or aeroallergen. The products resulting from this collaboration will leverage Selecta's proprietary Synthetic Vaccine Particle (SVP™) platform which has unique capabilities to engineer nanoparticles with the ideal structure and composition to produce immune tolerance by balancing the overactive response to specific allergy-causing antigens.

Under the terms of the agreement Selecta is eligible to receive several pre-clinical, clinical, regulatory and sales milestones totaling $300 million per allergen indication for up to three immunotherapy candidates contemplated by this collaboration. Selecta is also entitled to up to double digit tiered royalties as percentage of product net sales for each commercialized immunotherapy.

As part of the research alliance, Sanofi will work together with Selecta to design antigen-specific immunotherapies that meet unmet needs as defined by Sanofi for applications where Selecta's technology can offer a new therapeutic approach for life-threatening and other severe allergies. Under the terms of the agreement, Sanofi will have access to Selecta's proprietary Synthetic Vaccine Particle (SVP™) platform that is designed to create robust antigen-specific immune responses for superior immunotherapy effectiveness. This collaboration is aligned with Sanofi's strategic focus areas in immunology and leverages Sanofi's Boston-based research and development capabilities.

"We are very pleased that Sanofi, a global leader in vaccines and immunology is entering into a partnership with Selecta to develop and commercialize products from our immunotherapy platform," said Werner Cautreels, PhD, Selecta's President and CEO. "In allergies, as well as auto-immune diseases, organ transplantation, and protein replacement therapies, there is a lack of specific, effective and safe treatments to prevent undesired immune reactions. Selecta's SVP technology can restore balance to dysregulated immune systems by producing immune tolerance to specific antigens. Our approach addresses the underlying causes of these diseases and thereby makes advances beyond today's symptomatic treatments and allergen avoidance strategies."

About Selecta

Selecta Biosciences, Inc. is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing an entirely new class of targeted vaccines that induces an antigen-specific immune activation or antigen-specific immune tolerance for therapeutic and prophylactic applications. Selecta was founded based on complementary research by three academic pioneers, the nanotechnology innovations of Professors Robert Langer and Omid Farokhzad combined with the immunological insights of Professor Ulrich von Andrian.  Selecta's proprietary Synthetic Vaccine Particle (SVP™) platform creates a new paradigm in vaccine development, enabling completely new therapeutic and prophylactic applications while offering the potential of improved efficacy and safety profiles. Selecta's fully synthetic engineering of novel vaccines offers a number of compelling benefits, including flexible modular vaccine design and accelerated development timelines using robust manufacturing processes.  Selecta's SVP™ platform technology is readily adaptable to enable diverse vaccines and immunotherapies. 

The company has created two antigen-specific nanoparticle technologies:  targeted Synthetic Vaccine Particles (tSVP™) and antigen-specific targeted tolerogenic Synthetic Vaccine Particles (t2SVP™). Targeted Synthetic Vaccine Particles (tSVP™) activate immune responses to a wide array of relevant antigens, including small molecules, peptides, oligosaccharides, and proteins. These particles can target humoral or cellular pathways of the immune system. Examples for applications include cancer, infectious diseases and addiction. Targeted tolerogenic Synthetic Vaccine Particles (t2SVP™) are designed to induce antigen-specific immune tolerance. Examples for applications for t2SVP™ technology include autoimmune diseases, allergies, protein replacement therapies, and transplant rejection.

Selecta's pipeline currently contains vaccines for smoking cessation, malaria, and tolerogenic immunotherapies for type-1 diabetes and allergies.

Building on the company's novel approach, Selecta's product candidates have the potential to become first-in-class or best-in-class therapeutics to treat and prevent diseases. Selecta Biosciences, Inc. is based in Watertown, Massachusetts, USA.  For more information, please visit www.selectabio.com.