Publication date: 05/11/2018
Oxurion NV (Euronext Brussels: OXUR), a biopharmaceutical company developing innovative treatments to preserve vision in patients with diseases affecting the back of the eye, announced today that it entered into a strategic research collaboration with Beta Therapeutics Pty Ltd (Canberra, Australia) to develop new heparanase inhibitors for the treatment of retinal disorders with large unmet medical needs such as dry age-related macular degeneration.
Under the terms of the agreement Oxurion will have an exclusive option to license in the heparanase inhibitor program. Beta Therapeutics will receive an undisclosed upfront payment from Oxurion and is eligible to receive a payment upon exercising the licensing option, development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments, as well as royalties on net sales on the products developed under the partnership.
Heparanase is an endoglycosidase playing an important role in modifying the extracellular matrix and in inflammatory processes. Over-expression of heparanase occurs under pathological conditions resulting in detrimental changes in the extracellular matrix and tissue micro-environment. In the retina, heparanase has been implicated in Diabetic Retinopathy (DR) and potentially in Age-related Macular Degeneration (AMD) pathogenesis.
Patrik De Haes, MD, CEO of Oxurion nv, commented: "We are very excited about this new collaboration with Beta Therapeutics. As our DME clinical programs are progressing well, we continue to leverage our unique knowhow and expertise for exploring, identifying and eventually acquiring innovative molecules to treat diseases in the back-of-the-eye with the highest unmet medical need such as dry age-related macular degeneration"
"We are pleased to collaborate on this exciting program with Oxurion as we have been impressed by their expertise in the field as well as their development capabilities. This partnership is a recognition of all the work on heparanase carried out at Beta Therapeutics and at the Australian National University " stated Dr. Keats Nelms, CEO & Co-Founder of Beta Therapeutics.
Oxurion (Euronext Brussels: OXUR) is a biopharmaceutical company developing treatments to preserve vision in patients with diseases affecting the back of the eye. The company has built a diverse portfolio of disease-modifying therapies, including treatments for diabetic eye disease, a leading cause of blindness in people of working age worldwide.
Oxurion's clinical pipeline consists of THR-317, a PlGF inhibitor, for the treatment of diabetic macular edema (DME); THR-149, a plasma kallikrein inhibitor for the treatment of DME; and THR-687, a pan-RGD integrin antagonist for the treatment of diabetic retinopathy and DME. Further new drug candidates are currently being assessed and developed for the treatment of diabetic eye disease.
Oxurion owns the global rights to JETREA® (ocriplasmin), the only pharmacological vitreolysis drug approved for the treatment of symptomatic vitreomacular adhesion (in the U.S.) and vitreomacular traction (outside the U.S.).
Oxurion is headquartered in Leuven, Belgium, and is listed on the Euronext Brussels exchange under the symbol OXUR. In the US, Oxurion NV operates ThromboGenics Inc. as a subsidiary company. More information is available at www.oxurion.com
About Beta Therapeutics
Beta Therapeutics is developing therapeutics directed toward a novel and critical mechanism observed in inflammatory micro-environments of diseases including diabetes and retinopathy.
The company develops inhibitors of heparanase, an enzyme that mediates inflammatory micro-environments through its role in the activation of local inflammatory cells as well as the breakdown of extracellular components essential for cytokine and growth factor turnover. The company's drug development programs are based on discoveries made by company scientific founders Prof. Chris Parish and Dr. Charmaine Simeonovic and colleagues at the John Curtin School of Medical Research of the Australian National University.
The company's novel small molecule heparanase inhibitors have applicability in a range of therapeutic areas including diabetes and it has demonstrated that these therapeutics exhibit significant efficacy in disease models that progress due to inflammation in specific tissue micro-environments. More information is available at www.betatherapeutics.com.au.