Cangene acquires Twinstrand Therapeutics Inc
Cangene Corporation today announces that it has acquired all issued and outstanding shares of privately held Twinstrand Therapeutics Inc. ("Twinstrand"). Cangene has paid $1.5 million (subject to post-closing adjustments) to acquire Twinstrand which has products, technologies and financial attributes including those related to tax. Twinstrand has established a technology that uses modified versions of ricin, a plant-derived cell toxin, as therapeutic prodrugs. Its lead drug, a product known as TST10088, is currently undergoing a Phase I clinical trial. The prodrugs leave healthy cells unaffected while specific chemical activity within targeted diseased cells activates the cell-killing activities of the drug. As a spin-off from its original focus, Twinstrand has also begun developing anti-ricin, antibody-based therapeutics; Cangene has partnered with Twinstrand on this technology in the past. The acquisition of Twinstrand includes an obligation that Cangene pay to certain of Twinstrand's former investors a royalty on any commercial sales of antibody products related to TST10088 that may be developed, as well as a royalty on any associated licensing fees.
"This acquisition is in line with our on-going interest in augmenting our commercial pipeline and biodefence products through the acquisition of complementary products or technologies," said Dr. John Langstaff, Cangene's president and CEO.
Twinstrand is a private clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery and development of biological drugs for the treatment of life-threatening diseases. Its pipeline includes products with applications in cancer; viral, parasitic and fungal diseases; and biodefence. Cangene plans on winding-up Twinstrand and integrating its activities into Cangene's operations.
About Cangene Corporation
Cangene is one of Canada's largest and earliest biopharmaceutical companies. It was founded in 1984 and is headquartered in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Cangene has approximately 700 employees in eight locations across North America and its products are sold worldwide. It operates three large manufacturing facilities - two in Winnipeg, Manitoba and one in Baltimore, Maryland - where it produces its own products and undertakes contract manufacturing for a number of companies. Cangene operates three U.S. and one Canadian plasma-collection facilities. In addition, it has a regulatory affairs, sales and corporate communications office in Toronto, Ontario.
Cangene is focused on developing therapeutics for infectious diseases, and the Company uses patented manufacturing processes to produce plasma-derived and recombinant therapeutic proteins. Cangene has five FDA and/or Health Canada-approved products. In addition, the Company has several more products in development at various stages. Three of Cangene's products have been accepted into the U.S. Strategic National Stockpile - botulism antitoxin, anthrax immune globulin and vaccinia immune globulin, a product used to counteract certain complications that may arise from smallpox vaccination.
Capitalizing on its drug manufacturing expertise, Cangene also operates a significant contract research and manufacturing business using its Winnipeg facilities and the resources of Baltimore, Maryland-based Chesapeake Biological Laboratories, Inc. (a wholly owned subsidiary). Cangene's website, www.cangene.com, includes product and investor information, including past news releases. Chesapeake's website is www.cblinc.com.
"Cangene" is a trademark belonging to Cangene Corporation.
The reader should be aware that Cangene's businesses are subject to risks and uncertainties that cannot be predicted or quantified; consequently, actual results may differ materially from past results and those expressed or implied by any forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause or contribute to such risks or uncertainties include, but are not limited to: the regulatory environment including the difficulty of predicting regulatory outcomes; changes in the value of the Canadian dollar; the Company's reliance on a small number of customers including government organizations; the demand for new products and the impact of competitive products, service and pricing; availability and cost of raw materials, especially the cost, availability and antibody concentration in plasma; fluctuations in operating results; government policies or actions; progress and cost of clinical trials; reliance on key strategic relationships; costs and possible development delays resulting from use of legal, regulatory or legislative strategies by the Company's competitors; uncertainty related to intellectual property protection and potential costs associated with its defence; the Company's exposure to lawsuits; and other matters beyond control of management. Risks and uncertainties are discussed more extensively in the MD&A section of the Company's most recent annual report and annual information form, which are available on the Company's website or on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
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