EuroBiotech: More Articles of Note


> BioGeneration Ventures (BGV) held the first close of its third fund. The aim is to raise €50 million ($56 million) and use it to provide seed and growth capital to up to 14 life science companies. BGV is looking to invest in companies in Europe, in particular its home country of the Netherlands. The first two BGV funds list Acerta Pharma and Dezima Pharma among their successes. AstraZeneca ($AZN) snapped up 55% stake in Acerta in December for $4 billion, while Amgen ($AMGN) struck a $1.6 billion deal for Dezima in September. Release

> Novartis ($NVS) paid MorphoSys (ETR:MOR) a milestone in relation to the start of a Phase I trial. The asset, the twelfth therapeutic antibody from MorphoSys that Novartis has tested in the clinic, is designed to prevent thrombosis. Novartis first began working with MorphoSys 12 years ago, at which time it made a €9 million ($10 million) investment in its partner. Release

> Karolinska Development (STO:KDEV) offloaded its stake in Clanotech, a developer of drugs against eye diseases including glaucoma. Rosetta Capital is the acquirer of the shares. The deal knocks another SEK 54.8 million ($6.5 million) off the net fair value of KDEV’s portfolio, but the Swedish investment group still has a chance to profit from the success of Clanotech through an earn-out agreement. KDEV has divested multiple investments in similar deals over the past year as part of an attempt to improve its fortunes. Release

> Ferring Pharmaceuticals posted data from a Phase III trial of its human recombinant follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) in women undergoing their first cycle of in-vitro fertilisation or intracytoplasmic injection. The cohort of participants treated with an individualized dosing regimen of the FSH, known as follitropin delta, achieved ongoing pregnancy and implantation rates comparable to the group who received a conventional follitropin alfa regimen. Release

> AstraZeneca ($AZN) made a $10 million (€9 million) milestone payment to Heptares Therapeutics after the first patient was dosed in a Phase I trial of a drug resulting from their collaboration. The drug, small molecule adenosine A2A receptor antagonist HTL1071, is being given in combination with AstraZeneca’s PD-L1 checkpoint inhibitor durvalumab to 50 patients with advanced solid malignancies and with non-small cell lung cancer. AstraZeneca is hoping that blocking the adenosine A2A receptor can make immune checkpoint inhibitors more effective. Release

> Shares in Nanobiotix (EPA:NANO) climbed 10% following the publication of data from a Phase I/II trial of its lead candidate in head and neck cancer. The candidate, a nanoparticle radio-enhancer, is designed to make radiotherapy more effective without detrimentally affecting the side effect profile of the treatment. All seven of the evaluable patients in the Phase I/II saw their tumor volume shrink by 50% or more. The data have encouraged Nanobiotix to start work on a development plan designed to lead to registration of the drug. Release