OBI Pharma signs cancer drug deal with HK’s Odeon

Source: Taipei Times by Kao Shih-ching

OBI Pharma Inc (浩鼎生技) has signed an agreement with Odeon Therapeutics (Hong Kong) Ltd (康騰浩諾香港生物科技) to give it the rights to two of its experimental drugs, OBI-833 and OBI-999, in China, OBI said on Tuesday.

OBI would receive US$200 million for the licensing of the cancer drugs, which includes US$12 million in newly issued Odeon shares as a signing payment, and US$188 million as development and commercialization milestone payments, the Taipei-based company said in a regulatory filing.

The drug developer would also receive double-digit percentage royalties on Odeon’s net sales of the two drugs after they are approved in China, it said.

OBI granted Odeon exclusive rights to further develop, register and commercialize OBI-999 and OBI-833, it said, adding that the deal also includes Hong Kong and Macau.

Odeon would be responsible for all development costs, as well as subsequent regulatory and commercialization costs, it added.

The Ministry of Economic Affairs’ Investment Commission has approved the deal, OBI said.

As China’s cancer treatment market has great potential for growth, OBI and Odeon are planning to press ahead with the research and sale of the two drugs, aiming to share the commercial benefits, the filing said.

OBI-833 and OBI-999 are experimental drugs targeting Globo H, a tumor antigen that has been detected in up to 15 different cancers and has been reported to play an important role in tumor progression.

OBI-833 is a therapeutic cancer vaccine consisting of a synthetic Globo H antigen, while OBI-999 is a novel antibody drug conjugate using a Globo H antibody to target cancer cells with high Globo H expression.

“Odeon looks forward to working closely with OBI to bring these new treatment options to patients in China,” OBI chief executive officer Tim Xiao (肖汀) said in a statement.

OBI-999 has completed phase 1 trials in the US, showing excellent safety and pharmacokinetics, while OBI-333 also demonstrated great potential as an immune-oncology therapeutic vaccine, Xiao said.

OBI said that it gained local approval to conduct phase 2 clinical trial for OBI-333, expecting primary endpoint evaluation in 2024.

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