ASLAN Announces New Research Collaboration With Academia Sinica’s Genomic Research Centre In Taiwan

Published: Aug 16, 2017

Singapore and Taipei, Taiwan, 16 August 2017 – ASLAN Pharmaceuticals (ASLAN, 6497.TT), a biotech company focused on the development of immunotherapies and targeted agents for Asia prevalent tumour types, today announced the signing of a research collaboration agreement with Academia Sinica’s Genomic Research Centre, one of Taiwan’s eminent research institutions.

In recent studies with varlitinib, major responses were seen in a number of patients with advanced disease and with difficult to treat tumours, such as biliary tract cancer. The collaboration with Academia Sinica will build on the research ASLAN has been conducting to understand the genetic mutations responsible for varlitinib sensitivity. The research collaboration will also evaluate the effectiveness of combining varlitinib and ASLAN003 in animal models for gastric, colorectal and lung cancers, in addition to other tumour types.

Dr Michael Hsiao, a Research Fellow in the Genomics Research Centre, and Dr Ming-Huang Chen, an attending physician from Taipei Veterans General Hospital, will lead the research collaboration.

Varlitinib is a potent, reversible, small molecule pan-HER inhibitor and is currently being developed across multiple indications including biliary tract, gastric, metastatic breast and metastatic colorectal cancers. ASLAN003 is a highly potent, best-in-class, small molecule inhibitor of DiHydroOrotate DeHydrogenase (DHODH) enzyme, and is currently being developed in acute myeloid leukaemia.


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ASLAN Pharmaceuticals
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About varlitinib (ASLAN001)

Varlitinib (ASLAN001) is a potent small molecule inhibitor of the HER-family of receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs). The type I RTK family consists of four distinct but closely related receptors: epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR, ErbB1, HER1), epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2, ErbB2), epidermal growth factor receptor 3 (HER3, ErbB3), and epidermal growth factor receptor 4 (HER4, ErbB4). Varlitinib is a potent, reversible, small molecule inhibitor of EGFR, HER2 and HER4. In a large variety of cancers, the overexpression and/or constitutive activation of EGFR and HER2 are often observed and frequently correlate with poor clinical prognosis. Therefore, by inhibiting the activation of the HER receptors via varlitinib, effects such as shrinkage of the tumour and longer survival can be anticipated. Varlitinib is currently being studied in biliary tract, breast and gastric cancers. Varlitinib has been granted orphan drug status in the USA for cholangiocarcinoma and gastric cancer and was awarded orphan drug status for the treatment of advanced biliary tract cancer after first line systemic therapy by the Korean MFDS.

About ASLAN003

ASLAN003 is highly potent, oral once daily, best in class, small molecule inhibitor of DiHydroOrotate DeHydrogenase (DHODH), with excellent tolerability and pharmacokinetic properties in human subjects. ASLAN003 is structurally distinct from first generation DHODH inhibitors such as Leflunomide or Teriflunomide, and was exclusively licensed by ASLAN from Almirall. ASLAN has global rights for all non-topical and non-dermatological indications.

About ASLAN Pharmaceuticals

ASLAN Pharmaceuticals (6497.TT) is an oncology focused biotechnology company developing a portfolio of immunotherapies and targeted drugs, focusing on Asia prevalent tumour types. Led by a highly experienced management team with global pharmaceutical expertise, ASLAN is headquartered in Singapore with a platform that reaches across the region via its offices in Taiwan, China and Australia. The Company is developing 5 drugs addressing multiple indications including biliary tract cancer, gastric cancer and colorectal cancer, and has two global pivotal studies in biliary tract cancer and gastric cancer underway. ASLAN’s partners include Array BioPharma, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Almirall and CSL.

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