TxCell, Ferring B.V. Strike €75 Million Plus Deal

Published: Jan 02, 2015

TxCell, Ferring B.V. Strike €75 Million Plus Deal
January 2, 2015
By Jessica Wilson, BioSpace.com Breaking News Staff

TxCell SA and Ferring International Center S.A. (Ferring), which formed a partnership in 2014 to develop the drug Ovasave, today announced their collaboration has been assigned to Trizell Holding SA, an affiliate member of the Dr. Frederik Paulsen Foundation.

The foundation established Trizell “to provide specialist management and scientific and development expertise” to advanced therapies, TxCell said in a statement.

The advanced therapy to be supported is TxCell’s Ovasave, a new class of personalized T cell immunotherapies for the treatment of severe chronic inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. This class of T cell immunotherapies uses antigen specific T-cells (Ag-Tregs) as the means of treatment. Currently, Ovasave is being studied for the treatment of refractory Crohn’s disease, an inflammatory disorder of the gastrointestinal tract.

“Products at the forefront of innovation, such as TxCell’s personalized medicine, require expert and dedicated development teams,” Damian Marron, chief executive officer of TxCell, said in a statement. He continued by saying TxCell would “benefit enormously from the additional focus and expertise that Trizell will supply.”

In March 2014, TxCell announced that the company and Ferring had struck a deal,whereby TxCell granted Ferring an option to acquire an exclusive worldwide license for Ovasave for financial compensation potentially worth 76 million euros. The deal is unchanged by the addition of Trizell to the collaboration, according to TxCell.

Ferring, which like Trizell is an affiliate company of the Foundation, reiterated it would remain the “final commercializing party” of Ovasave, in a statement by Chief Operating Officer Michel Pettigrew. “This assignment to the Foundation’s specialist company [Trizell] reinforces our increasing commitment to new products like Ovasave which offer potential breakthroughs in the treatment for diseases with high unmet medical needs,” Pettigrew, who is also president of the executive board of Ferring, continued.

Refractory Crohn’s disease affects more than 100,000 people in Europe and the US for whom no therapeutic treatment exists.

In December 2014, TxCell announced the beginning of its Phase IIb trail of Ovasave for the treatment of Crohn’s disease. The study will eventually include a total of 160 patients suffering from severe refractory Crohn’s disease spread over 32 sites in six countries (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy and United Kingdom). Results are expected by the end of 2016 or beginning of 2017.

TxCell was spun off France’s Institut National de la Santé et de la Recherche Médicale (INSERM) with the mandate to commercialize autologous antigen-specific regulatory T lymphocytes developed through its own ASTrIA technology platform.

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