Vasomune Therapeutics, a Toronto-based spin-out from Sunnybrook Research Institute and MaRS Innovation, and AnGes, Inc., a Japan-based biotechnology company focused on developing biotherapeutics, sign an innovative multi-million-dollar global Co-Development Agreement for the development and commercialization of therapeutics treating diseases associated with blood vessel dysfunction and destabilization.
The collaboration will advance Vasomune’s peptide-based Tie2 receptor agonist program, initially for the treatment of critical care indications, including Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS), into clinical development with the expectation of initiating clinical trials in 2020. ARDS is a critical care indication with a significant unmet medical need as there are currently no approved therapeutics.
With such a foundational mechanism involved in multiple disease states, the parties have the option to co-develop the compounds for additional indications associated with vascular dysfunction and leakage. These indications include asthma, atopic dermatitis, glaucoma and vascular complications of diabetes.
“Vasomune is enthusiastic to combine our technology, scientific and preclinical expertise with the significant development capabilities and track record of our colleagues at AnGes through this unique partnership structure to maximize the opportunity for a Tie2 receptor agonist to benefit patients.”, states Parimal Nathwani, president and CEO of Vasomune Therapeutics. “AnGes’ commitment to developing truly novel biotherapeutic medicines directly aligns with Vasomune’s objectives.”
Under the terms of the agreement, AnGes will provide Vasomune with multi-million-dollar co-development contributions including upfront and clinical milestone fees. The initial objective of the partnership is to achieve human proof of concept in ARDS, which alone is could potentially be a US$2.5 billion market opportunity worldwide.
Ei Yamada, president and CEO, AnGes, states, “We are truly impressed by the quality of the research derived from Sunnybrook Research Institute and the unique partnership with MaRS Innovation that has created and advanced Vasomune Therapeutics. This program represents a significant commitment by AnGes to advance and develop truly innovative biotherapeutics towards commercialization for the benefit of patients.”
The partnership provides the option for continued co-development through to commercialization and expansion to other indications. The parties will share equally in all expenses and all proceeds including milestone and royalty payments from any third-party licensing transaction. Development and commercialization of the program will be managed through joint committees organized by the two companies.
“We are honoured to have AnGes validate the strength and translatability of Vasomune’s science led by Dr. Paul Van Slyke, chief scientific officer and co-inventor”, says Rafi Hofstein, president and CEO of MaRS Innovation. “This unique partnership has attracted foreign capital and expertise to allow Vasomune, a Canadian born company to grow and scale in Canada and maintain the legacy of the late Dr. Daniel Dumont.”