ApolloBio to develop Inovio’s VGX-3100 in Greater China

The agreement involves an option for potential inclusion of the Republic of Korea in the next three years.

VGX-3100 is a DNA immunotherapy product formulated for the treatment of pre-cancers caused by human papillomavirus (HPV).

It is currently being developed as a non-surgical therapy for high-grade cervical dysplasia and associated underlying persistent HPV infection.

Under the latest agreement, Inovio will receive an upfront payment of $23m from ApolloBio, along with potential milestone payments of up to $20m in the future.

The deal, which replaces the original agreement signed in November last year, covers development of the product for treatment and/or prevention of pre-cancerous HPV infections and HPV-driven dysplasias such as cervical, vulvar and anal pre-cancers.

The amendment, however, excludes HPV-driven cancers and combinations of VGX-3100 with other immunostimulants.

Inovio Pharmaceuticals president and CEO Dr Joseph Kim said: “We are pleased to move forward with an agreement that preserves the best interest for our shareholders by obtaining a greater upfront non-dilutive cash licence fee of $23m and removing the equity provisions.

“In addition, this collaborative agreement with ApolloBio could potentially accelerate our overall global VGX-3100 efforts by accessing clinical study patients in China.”

The firm expects to close the agreement in the first quarter of this year.

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