EuroBiotech: More Articles of Note

> A laundry list of European biotechs released oncology clinical trial data at and around ASCO. MorphoSys  (ETR:MOR) followed up the publication of data on MOR202 by posting an update on its anti-CD19 antibody, MOR208. The treatment delivered encouraging efficacy and duration of response data in a Phase IIa trial, giving MorphoSys the confidence to step up its clinical development activities. DNA Therapeutics released first-in-man data on the drug it hopes can stop cancer cells from fixing themselves following damage by treatments. MorphoSys | DNA

Scancell presented Phase I/II melanoma data. Targovax released Phase I/II data on its therapeutic cancer vaccine. Silence Therapeutics (AIM:SLN) provided a detailed look at data from the Phase IIa pancreatic cancer trial that got investors excited in March. ArGEN-X discussed preliminary efficacy data from a Phase I trial of ARGX-111. And Prothena ($PRTA) shared fresh data from a Phase I/II trial of its treatment for amyloid light-chain amyloidosis. Scancell | Targovax | Silence | arGEN-X | Prothena

Novartis ($NVS) pulled out of a mooted acquisition of Gamida Cell. The Big Pharma picked up an option to acquire Gamida Cell for up to $600 million (€530 million) in August but has decided against exercising its right. The decision continues the de-escalation of Novartis' interest in the Israeli biotech that began one year ago when it withdrew from an acquisition agreed to in a memorandum of understanding. Instead of pulling the trigger on the deal, Novartis picked up an option to buy the business by 2016 in exchange for a $35 million equity investment. FierceBiotech

Midatech (AIM:MTPH) agreed to buy DARA BioSciences ($DARA) in a deal worth nearly $30 million (€26 million). The deal gives Midatech a commercial foothold in the U.S. and a portfolio of cancer supportive care products. Midatech is paying $24 million upfront and signing up for up to $5.7 million in product performance-related milestones to acquire the assets. Release

Cellectis CEO André Choulika gave a bullish interview to FierceBiotech, in which he dismissed many of the company's rivals in the CAR-T space as niche players. The view is backed by a belief that personalized T cell treatments will never become mainstream products. If Choulika is right and Cellectis' off-the-shelf therapies capture the market, the French biotech will be bathing in money, a scenario that is reportedly driving Pfizer ($PFE) to consider buying the company. FierceBiotech | More

Imperial Innovations (AIM:IVO) led a £6 million ($9.2 million) Series A round in Auspherix, which is setting up shop at Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst in the United Kingdom. Auspherix is originally from Sydney, Australia but--with its founders having strong ties to the U.K.--has decided to establish an R&D team in Stevenage to further its antibacterial drug discovery program. Release

Genmab (CPH:GEN) paid Bristol-Myers Squibb ($BMY) $4 million (€3.5 million) to license a panel of antibodies against CD19. The one-off payment gives Genmab control of intellectual property covering assets targeting CD19, a protein found on hematological cancer cells that has attracted the interest of multiple drug developers, including Juno Therapeutics ($JUNO), MorphoSys and Novartis ($NVS). Release

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