South Korean clinical stage biopharmaceutical company, LG Chem Life Sciences, has triggered a license renewal fee to UK-based oncology drug company Avacta Group plc. of $2 million.
Avacta develops cancer therapies and diagnostics based on its proprietary Affimer and pre|CISION platforms. Under the terms of the agreement, LG Chem has the exclusive rights to develop and commercialize, on a global basis, Avacta’s Affimer PD-L1 inhibitor with Affimer XT serum half-life extension for a range of indications.
LG Chem has exercised its license renewal option and will progress the PD-L1/XT candidate by starting pre-clinical studies which are intended to form the basis of an Investigational New Drug (IND) submission.
Alastair Smith, chief executive officer of Avacta, said: “I am very pleased with the progress being made by our partners LG Chem with the Affimer PD-L1 checkpoint inhibitor program, which includes the Affimer XT serum half-life extension technology. The initiation of IND enabling studies represents a significant step towards first-in-human clinical trials of the Affimer platform, which is a key value driver for the technology and for Avacta.”
In December 2018, Avacta and LG Chem entered into a multi-target development agreement to develop Affimer therapeutics in several disease areas. In 2020 the companies agreed to expand this drug development partnership to include Avacta’s Affimer XTtechnology, which can be used to control the time a drug spends in the blood.