Drug Development, Protocols

Protocols: Cell Medica strikes a TCR research deal with University College London; UK offers early access to AbbVie’s venetoclax

A few months after striking a CAR-T pact with Baylor, Cell Medica has struck a deal to work with University College London on new T cell receptor products. The biotech was drawn to the work of Professor Hans Stauss and Professor Emma Morris of UCL. TCRs are attractive to drug developers because they offer a new range of intracellular targets to add to the surface targets already in sight. New deals around cell therapies have exploded in recent times, and academic researchers have been thrust into the middle of the fray.

The UK’s early access to medicines scheme has added AbbVie’s CLL drug Venclexta (venetoclax) to the list.

CRISPR/Cas9 tech is hot, and The Broad knows it. The prestigious research unit run by Harvard and MIT has outlicensed its gene editing tech to AMRI, which is using it for some of its customers. CRISPR/Cas9 has been spreading like wildfire in academic and industry circles.

Canada’s Cyon Therapeutics has inked a licensing deal to use Novartis’s anti-PCSK9 antibody LGT-209 in new research for SIRS (systemic inflammatory response syndrome) as well as sepsis. Cyon plans to move immediately into a Phase II clinical program with the antibody.

BioCardia is jumping onto the OTC market through a reverse merger with Tiger X Medical. The merged outfit will have $23 million on hand to pursue its late-stage work on a new heart therapy.

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