Latvia - 05/14/2020 (PRESS RELEASE JET)
Rigvir holding concludes a deal with Chinese biotech company Sinorda Biomedicine on development and commercialisation of ECHO-7 oncolytic virotherapy cancer medicine in Chinese market and agrees on sales of minority shares in the manufacturing company.
China, Guizhou, National high-tech Zone – In April this year a deal regarding licensing Chinese biotech company Guizhou Sinorda Biomedicine Co. to develop and distribute medicines of the oncolytic virus in the territory of China was completed. As part of the deal, Sinorda acquired rights to obtain 3% shares in company Latima, which manufactures the oncolytic virus ECHO-7.
The value of the deal amounts to EUR 8 million, which will be received in several instalments, and in addition Latima has the right to royalty for distribution of the medicinal products in the Chinese market during the entire term of validity of the oncolytic virus patent. Latima maintains rights to manufacture of the oncolytic virus.
According to the agreements concluded, Sinorda should take targeted measures to develop medicinal products in the Chinese market, including conducting clinical trials, drug registration in China and measures to promote medicines in the market.
The main agreements for the deal were signed on 6 November 2019 in Shanghai, at China International Import Expo during a special ceremony that was attended by both Rigvir and Sinorda top managements.
ECHO-7 is the first ever registered oncolytic virus, not genetically modified. In 2004, ECHO-7 virus-containing medicinal product Rigvir for treatment of melanoma was registered in Latvia as EU Member State according to the national procedure. Development of Rigvir medicinal products started in the 1960s; Horaizen 2020 grant for feasibility study of Rigvir medicinal products in the EU was received in 2016; scientific advice from the European Medicines Agency was received in 2017 to launch and register Phase 2 studies according to the EU centralised procedure.
Sinorda board chairman Pingsheng Hu, “We are happy to get in our portfolio such a promising drug that has been in clinical practice for 15 years and has proven itself to be a safe and efficient drug. We spent a long time searching for a unique oncolytic virus, and now we have found it and will not delay investing serious resources in it and moving it forward to make it available to the Chinese people as soon as possible. We see great prospects for ECHO-7 virus in oncolytic immunotherapy on a number of cancer types and also in combination with otherdrugs. We will endeavour to push ECHO-7 oncolytic virus therapy into China Clinical trial.”
Rigvir holding CEO Jurgis Auzins, “This deal has been a purposeful step to attract a new strong partner and provide funding for further steps towards the EU centralised procedure for the registration of medicinal products containing ECHO-7 oncolytic virus. We are sure that Sinorda will superbly manage its task, and we will also be able to continue our cancer virotherapy development mission even more powerfully.”
The two companies have set up a joint cooperation team and have already come together for a joint scientific seminar to coordinate future action for development of anticancer virus medicines.
Rigvir holding is a family company founded by the inventor of oncolytic virus ECHO-7, Aina Muceniece. Currently, Rigvir Group consists of a number of companies that manufacture, develop and market the Rigvir medicines containing the oncolytic virus ECHO-7.
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