JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israel’s Biond Biologics Ltd said on Tuesday it had forged an exclusive global licence agreement, potentially worth more than $1 billion, with French drugmaker Sanofi for the development and commercialization of its BND-22 cancer drug.
Biond, a privately-held biopharmaceutical company, developing novel immunotherapies for cancer, said that it will receive a $125 million upfront payment in cash under the deal.
It will also be entitled to receive more than $1 billion in development, regulatory, and sales milestones, as well as tiered double-digit royalty payments, the company said.
BND-22, Biond said, has been shown in preclinical studies to have a broad anti-tumor effect and that it had already submitted a new drug application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
A Phase 1 study to evaluate the safety, tolerability, and preliminary anti-tumor activity of BND-22 in advanced cancer patients is planned to start by mid-2021.
Biond will lead the first-in-human study of BND-22, evaluating its safety and tolerability as a single agent and in combination with approved cancer therapeutics, as well as exploring potential associations between BND-22 anti-tumor activity and select tumor and blood-based biomarkers.
Sanofi will then assume responsibility for clinical development and commercialization, Biond said.
Sanofi on Monday agreed to buy British immunotherapy firm Kymab for up to $1.45 billion, the latest in a string of deals as it belatedly expands in a fast-growing medical area.
Reporting by Steven Scheer; editing by Barbara Lewis
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