PharmaWatch: AstraZeneca Partners with Transgene for Virus-based Immunotherapy Advancements


France-based Transgene (TNG) a biotech venture that designs and develops virus-based immunotherapies against cancers and infectious diseases announced the inking of deal with global UK pharma AstraZeneca. The two have inked a collaborative research, option and exclusive license agreement. They seek to co-develop five armed oncolytic vaccinia virus candidates. They seek to develop innovative oncolytic viruses resulting from this collaboration from Transgene’s proprietary next generation viral platform called Invir.IO TM.

Transgene SA, founded in France, is a fully integrated biopharma company specializing in immunotherpeutics to treat cancer and infectious disease. The company has subsidiaries in China and the USA. They have been funded by the Mérieux family since 1994. They have been publicly traded since 1998.

Deal Terms

  • Transgene will contribute its oncolytic virus expertise (including viral design and engineering) to the collaboration as well as its novel improved Vaccinia Virus (TK-, RR-) double-deleted backbone and will be responsible for in-vitro preclinical development
  • AstraZeneca is responsible for selecting the transgenes to be encoded within the virus and will be responsible for further in-vivo preclinical development and, subject to option exercise, clinical development and commercialization of these novel oncolytic immunotherapies.
  • Transgene to receive $10 million upon signing and additional preclinical success milestones of up to $3 million.
  • Transgene is eligible to receive an option exercise payment on each candidate if AstraZeneca exercises option
  • Also development and commercial milestones and royalties if AstraZeneca exercises options