News briefing: Pfizer and Vivet get the OK to start gene therapy trial for rare liver disorder; Florida biotech inks $50M China deal – Endpoints News

Posted: November 20, 2020 at 5:57 pm

Vivet Therapeutics and Pfizer are one step closer to bringing a gene therapy for a rare liver disorder into the clinic.

The companies announced Wednesday morning that the FDA has accepted its IND application for a Phase I/II study in the treatment of Wilsons disease. The study, evaluating a program dubbed VTX-801, is expected to launch early next year.

VTX-801 is an rAAV-based gene therapy vector designed to deliver a protein called ATP7B in the hopes of restoring copper homeostasis, reversing liver pathology and reducing copper accumulation in the brain, as it was shown to do in mouse models.

The study will be open label and not be randomized. Researchers will give a one-time IV infusion of the gene therapy in up to 16 adult patients, with the goal of evaluating three different dosage levels. Ultimately, the companies set a primary endpoint for safety and tolerability after 52 weeks.

In March 2019, Pfizer acquired a minority stake in the company, and in September, the big pharma agreed to manufacture the VTX-801 vector for this Phase I/II study. Max Gelman

Florida-based biotech Generex has inked the biggest deal (it) could even imagine, bagging $50 million from a consortium of Chinese institutions that licensed its Ii-Key vaccine tech for infectious diseases and cancer.

Comprising hybrid peptides and a suppression, the platform has spawned a vaccine candidate against SARS-CoV-2 in addition to a pipeline of immuno-oncology therapies.

We are able to generate a detailed immune activation profile of our Ii-Key vaccine candidates by screening blood samples from COVID-19 recovered patients, explained Richard Purcell, EVP of R&D.

In addition to the upfront fee for the overall deal, the unnamed partners have handed over $5 million to license the Covid-19 vaccine candidate and promised a $20 million success fee if its approved in China. Separate contracts for the other indications are being finalized. Amber Tong

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News briefing: Pfizer and Vivet get the OK to start gene therapy trial for rare liver disorder; Florida biotech inks $50M China deal - Endpoints News

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