Avacta shares up on LG Chem Life Sciences news

Shares of Wetherby-based cancer therapies and diagnostics company Avacta Group plc rose about 5% after it announced that a pre-clinical development milestone has been achieved in its multi-target therapeutics development partnership with LG Chem Life Sciences, the life sciences division of the South Korean LG Group, triggering an undisclosed milestone payment.

“Avacta and LG Chem have a multi-target therapeutics development agreement to develop Affimer therapeutics in several disease areas,” said Avacta.

“As part of the agreement, LG Chem has the exclusive rights to develop and commercialise, on a world-wide basis, Avacta’s Affimer PD-L1 inhibitor with Affimer XT serum half-life extension.

LG Chem has successfully completed certain pre-clinical in-vivo models in the PD-L1/XT programme leading to the selection of a pre-clinical candidate for further development towards the clinic and triggering an undisclosed milestone payment.

The partnership also provides LG Chem with rights to develop and commercialise other Affimer and non-Affimer biotherapeutics combined with Affimer XT half-life extension for a range of indications and Avacta could earn up to $55m in milestone payments for each of these new products.

“In addition, under the agreement Avacta will earn royalties on all future Affimer XT product sales by LG Chem.”

Avacta CEO Alastair Smith said: “I am delighted with the progress in our important strategic partnership with LG Chem.

“LG Chem is a world-class drug development partner with excellent biologics manufacturing and clinical development capabilities and a pioneering vision to develop innovative drugs.

“I am particularly pleased that we have achieved this significant milestone with a novel Affimer bispecific product, which highlights the tremendous promise of the Affimer platform.”

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Dalriada Media LLC sites are edited by veteran news journalist Mark McSherry, a former staff editor and reporter with Reuters, Bloomberg and major newspapers including the South China Morning Post, London's Sunday Times and The Scotsman. McSherry's journalism has also appeared in The Washington Post, The Guardian, The Independent, The New York Times, London's Evening Standard and Forbes. McSherry is also a professor of journalism and communication arts in universities and colleges in New York City. Scottish-born McSherry has an MBA from the University of Edinburgh and a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University.