China Licensing Deals Tracker: Jan 2021
Writer: Minhua Chu
Editor: Howard Fields
China's biopharmaceutical industry completed a dozen licensing deals in the first month of 2021, continuing its 2020 trend of cross-the-border hot licensing deals.
Among the 11 deals, nine were in the field of oncology. The other two were late-stage assets for COVID-19 vaccine and immunology diseases licensed by Advaccine and Zai Lab, respectively.
Zai Lab (NASDAQ: ZLAB, SEHK: 9688.HK) is one of most active China biopharmas in licensing, having acquired two projects in January: efgartigimod, a first-in-class investigational antibody fragment to target the neonatal Fc receptor (FcRn), developed by the Dutch pharmaceutical firm Argenx, and TPX-0022, an orally bioavailable multi-targeted kinase inhibitor (MET, CSF1R, and SRC), by Turning Point Therapeutics.
Beigene (NASDAQ: BGNE, SEHK: 6160.HK), which recently submitted a prospectus for the Shanghai Stock Exchange (SSE) STAR Market, also announced two licensing deals. It reached a collaboration and license agreement with Novartis for its anti-PD-1 antibody tislelizumab in the United States, Canada, Mexico, some European countries, and Japan. The deal also was the top licensing deal in January. Meanwhile, Beigene got two preclinical messenger RNA (mRNA) therapies from Strand Therapeutics.