Asia Deal Watch: Astellas Looks To Next-Gen AAV Vectors Despite Gene Therapy Clinical Setbacks
Astellas inks agreement with Dyno Therapeutics for access to its CapsidMap platform for novel AAV vectors. Taiho takes option to Arcus TIGIT-targeted antibody candidates.
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China's biopharma firms including Hengrui Medicine and HUTCHMED actively pursue licensing partners for their drug assets as the economic downturn caused by domestic COVID flare-ups continues worsening. Meanwhile, there are some predictions that smaller biotechs in the country may need to tap into multinationals' deep pockets to raise new funds.
Private Company Edition: The Paragon Biosciences-founded Emalex previously raised $35m when ecopipam was in Phase II. Also, Catalio Capital launches a “special situations” fund, Zenas raises $118m to develop a pipeline of autoimmune disease treatments and Lusaris emerges with $60m.
Indian firms are getting their act together in areas like cell and gene therapy, with Dr Reddy’s aiming big and readying a facility alongside an alliance with a Chinese firm for a CAR-T therapy. The company is also doubling down in contract development and manufacturing, with an eye on opportunities in biologics.