Avacta Group plc (LON: AVCT), the developer of Affimer® biotherapeutics and reagents, has provided an update on the Affimer® therapeutics development partnership and license agreement with LG Chem Life Sciences (LG Chem), part of the South Korean LG Group, to develop Affimer® therapeutics in several disease areas.
Avacta has successfully generated a large number of Affimer proteins that bind to the first drug target nominated by LG Chem. These candidate Affimer molecules are now being optimised by Avacta, for LG Chem to then carry out pre-clinical development, successful completion of which would trigger the next substantial milestone payment to Avacta.
LG Chem has now expanded the collaboration by nominating the second and third drug targets and Avacta is beginning the discovery programmes for Affimer binders to those new targets. Each of these programmes also has the potential for further milestone payments.
The multi-target therapeutics development agreement with LG Chem was signed in December 2018 and provided upfront and near-term development milestone payments, plus longer-term clinical development milestones. Avacta will also receive royalties on any future product sales and LG Chem is covering all Avacta’s costs of research and development associated with the collaboration.
Alastair Smith, Chief Executive Officer at Avacta, commented:
“I am very pleased with the excellent progress made in the first programme with LG Chem. Not only is this an important validation of the Affimer platform, confirming that it can be used to quickly generate potential candidate drug molecules for development, but it also means that we have taken an important step towards receiving the next substantial milestone payment under our collaboration agreement.
Our partnership with LG Chem goes from strength to strength with their decision to nominate the next two drug targets. I look forward to keeping the market informed of further progress over the coming months.”
finnCap said this morning “Avacta Group announced that LG Chem has nominated the second and third drug targets of its multi-target development alliance that, potentially, is worth up to $310m. We make no change to forecasts, with FY 2020 revenues already factoring in c.$3m of near-term milestones. However, it provides further endorsement, if needed, about Avacta’s capabilities, namely speed of generating Affimer leads and validation of its therapeutic development platform.”