BioNTech, DualityBio to develop cancer treatment drugs in over $1.5-bln deal

April 3 (Reuters) – Germany’s BioNTech (22UAy.DE) said on Monday that it signed a deal with Chinese biotech company DualityBio to co-develop and commercialize two cancer antibody drug candidates.

DualityBio will receive upfront payments totalling $170 million and will be eligible to receive development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments of potentially more than $1.5 billion, as well as single-digit to double-digit tiered royalties, the companies said in a joint statement.

They said they will co-develop the candidates DB-1303 and DB-1311 as a combination therapy in solid tumours.

Both agents belong to the class of so-called antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), which are intended to destroy cancer cells in a targeted manner while avoiding damage to healthy tissue.

DualityBio will retain commercial rights for Mainland China, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region and the Macau Special Administrative Region, while BioNTech will hold commercial rights in the rest of the world.

However, DualityBio has an option to co-commercialize one of the two product candidates, DB-1311, in the United States, the companies said.

DualityBio’s lead candidate, DB-1303, has received Fast Track designation from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), which aims to speed up the development and testing of new drugs, and is currently in the second of three phases of clinical development.

Late in March, BioNTech had signed a deal with privately held OncoC4 Inc to co-develop and commercialize its cancer antibody drug candidate.

Reporting by Linda Pasquini, additional reporting by Patricia Weiss; Editing by Sharon Singleton

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Source: Reuters