OSLO, Norway: Targovax ASA (OSE: TRVX) and Hubro Therapeutics AS (Hubro) have entered into an asset purchase agreement whereby Hubro acquires Targovax’s GM-CSF (Granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor) process development and production project.
Under the agreement, Hubro will make a cash payment to Targovax of 10MNOK for the acquisition of the GM-CSF project. Targovax retains conditional buy-back and supply options, and a share in gross proceeds in the event of a re-sale of the asset within a time-limited period.
Dr. Lubor Gaal, Chief Financial Officer of Targovax, said: “With the switch to QS-21 STIMULONT from our collaboration partner Agenus as the adjuvant of choice for the next generation mutant RAS TG vaccines, Targovax is no longer prioritizing further investments into GM-CSF development. We are delighted that Hubro will now take over the GM-CSF adjuvant project and this deal shows that we can create value from non-strategic assets.”
Jon Amund Eriksen, Chief Executive Officer of Hubro, said: “For the commercial development of our therapeutic and prophylactic cancer vaccines it is important for us to have full control over production and supply of all pharmaceutical active components, including GM-CSF. We are therefore delighted for having the opportunity to take over the GM-CSF development project from Targovax, which will provide significant savings of development costs and time towards obtaining the high-quality product we need for pivotal clinical development and later marketing of our cancer vaccines.”
GM-CSF is an immuno-modulator used for protein and peptide-based vaccines and was the adjuvant component of Targovax’s first generation mutant RAS TG vaccine products. Following a collaboration agreement with Agenus Inc. [NASDAQ: AGEN] announced earlier in 2022, Targovax will develop its next generation mutant RAS TG vaccines with Agenus´ proprietary adjuvant QS-21 STIMULON.
Two clinical trials with Targovax´s lead mutant RAS candidate TG01 adjuvanted by QS-21 STIMULON are expected to open during 2022. The GM-CSF asset purchase agreement with Hubro ensures the continued development of the GM-CSF adjuvant product, which will serve as an integral part of Hubro’s technology platform.
Hubro aims at introducing its own developed GM-CSF product in clinical testing as adjuvant for its peptide cancer specific vaccines in 2024.