Made-in-Singapore Cancer Drug ETC-159 Advances Further in Clinical Trials

SINGAPORE, Jul 30, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – Made-in-Singapore cancer drug, ETC-159, has achieved a new developmental milestone in achieving "First Patient First Visit[1]" in Phase 1B. The first dose of ETC-159 has been administered to patients in this new phase of clinical testing, which for the first time, will look at efficacy in addition to assessing the safety of ETC-159 in treating different types of cancers.



Scientists from the Experimental Drug Development Centre, A*STAR, preparing ETC-159 clinical samples for real-time Reverse Transcription-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) which amplifies the genetic material. (Photo credit: A*STAR)


Scientists from the Experimental Drug Development Centre, A*STAR, using centrifuges to bring ETC-159 clinical sample reactions down. (Photo credit: A*STAR)


Scientists from the Experimental Drug Development Centre, A*STAR, performing real-time Reverse Transcription-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RT-PCR) to amplify the genetic material from ETC-159 clinical samples.
From L-R: Ms Sylvia Gan, Senior Research Manager; Ms Nurul Rozaini, Research Associate (Photo credit: A*STAR)



This clinical study will include subgroups of colorectal, endometrial and ovarian cancer patients from two sites in Singapore (National University Cancer Institute, Singapore and National Cancer Centre Singapore) and up to seven clinical sites in the United States, including four confirmed sites, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center (Houston, Texas); University of Colorado (Aurora, Colorado); Washington University in St. Louis (Missouri); and Duke University (Durham, North Carolina). The trial is expected to be completed by 2023 at the latest.

ETC-159 was jointly developed by Duke-NUS Medical School (Duke-NUS) and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), and first entered clinical trials in June 2015[2]. ETC-159 targets a range of cancers including colorectal, endometrial, ovarian and pancreatic cancers, which contribute to a significant fraction of Singapore's cancer burden. A subset of these cancers are caused by hyperactivity in a cell signalling pathway known as the Wnt pathway.

ETC-159 is an upstream inhibitor of the Wnt pathway and the clinical trial will determine to what extent this drug can slow or halt the growth of Wnt-high cancers or if ETC-159 can enhance the activity of immunotherapy in those patients that normally do not respond to immunotherapy. It has previously been shown that increased expression of Wnt pathway related genes is associated with drug resistance and exclusion of tumour-killing immune cells in the targeted types of cancers. The clinical trial uses ETC-159 to block the Wnt pathway so that immune cells can infiltrate the tumour. The trial will also combine ETC-159 with the immune checkpoint inhibitor pembrolizumab to stimulate the immune cells to kill tumour cells.

The Experimental Drug Development Centre (EDDC), a national platform for drug discovery and development, brought ETC-159 to the successful completion of Phase 1A clinical trials in July 2018. In that phase, proof of the drug's mechanism of action was achieved and a safe dose level established in 32 patients with advanced solid tumours.

EDDC, together with POLARIS[3] at A*STAR's Genome Institute of Singapore (GIS), and the Diagnostics Development (DxD) Hub, have also developed a novel diagnostic test in agreement with the US FDA, to identify a particular subgroup of colorectal cancer patients predicted to respond well to ETC-159 due to the presence of gene fusions involving R-spondin genes (RSPO2 or RSPO3) in their tumours. Such patients comprise only about 8% of colorectal cancers and will be identified upfront, based on left-over tumour tissue to be included in Phase 1B of the study. The test will be performed at POLARIS for all clinical samples from this trial.

"A significant milestone for EDDC and Singapore has been achieved with the progression of ETC-159 into Phase 1B clinical trials. We are grateful for the collaboration and input of our partners, such as Duke-NUS, POLARIS, clinical investigators and others within Singapore and beyond, which has enabled the successful completion of the Phase 1A trial and led us to initiate this next critical stage of ETC-159 development. We are optimistic about rapidly recruiting patients for the next phase of the clinical trial given the unmet need and opportunity ETC-159 brings to these patients, and will continue leveraging great science to make great medicines." – Professor Damian O'Connell, CEO EDDC, A*STAR

"The progression of ETC-159 to this exciting new phase of study is the result of a tremendous Singapore team effort, spanning from basic bench science to international clinical trials. With this critical study, we will learn whether ETC-159, by targeting a set of cancers that has previously been untreatable, will indeed help patients in Singapore and internationally. This important milestone is yet another testament to the research excellence and strong collaborations Singapore can achieve with focused effort. I hope this is just one of many such achievements." – Professor David Virshup, Duke-NUS Medical School

"This study will help address a critical and unmet need in gastrointestinal cancers. The novel design to molecularly screening for R-spondin fusion colorectal cancers that may be driven by the Wnt pathway and to target them with ETC-159 and immunotherapy has never been done before. Furthermore, most gastrointestinal cancers particularly colorectal cancers do not respond to immunotherapy. This may be due to suppression of immune cells in the tumour by Wnt-related pathways. We hope that by combining ETC-159 and immunotherapy we can circumvent this problem and achieve long-lasting responses for our patients." – Dr Matthew Ng, Senior Consultant, National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS)

"The incidence of ovarian and endometrial cancers is rising in the developed world, with many patients presenting at advanced stages of the disease. Despite initial responses to chemotherapy, the majority of patients with advanced ovarian and endometrial cancer will experience disease recurrence and eventually develop treatment refractory disease. At the National University Cancer Institute, Singapore (NCIS), we have long recognised this unmet medical need and have consistently been working with various academic and industry partners to develop new therapeutic approaches for these hard to treat gynaecological cancers. This clinical trial represents a novel and exciting therapeutic concept for the treatment of ovarian and endometrial cancers. In our continual drive to find better treatments for our patients, we certainly look forward to adding this study to the burgeoning portfolio of early phase trials at the NCIS Developmental Therapeutics Unit." – Associate Professor David Tan, Senior Consultant, National University Cancer Institute, Singapore (NCIS)

For more information on the ETC-159 clinical trials, please visit:
https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT02521844

Relevant images can be downloaded from:
https://tinyurl.com/y3kodlbk

For media queries and clarifications, please contact:
Mr Robin Chan
Head, Corporate Communications
Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)
Tel: +65 6826 6281
HP: +65 9830 2610
Email: robin_chan@hq.a-star.edu.sg

Lekshmy Sreekumar, Ph.D.
Communications
Duke-NUS Medical School
Tel: +65 6516 1138
Email: lekshmy_sreekumar@duke-nus.edu.sg

About the Experimental Drug Development Centre (EDDC)

The Experimental Drug Development Centre (EDDC) is a national platform for drug discovery and development formed in 2019 from the integration of A*STAR drug discovery and development units, namely, the Experimental Therapeutics Centre (ETC), Drug Discovery and Development (D3), and Experimental Biotherapeutics Centre (EBC). Together, these three units have forged partnerships with more than 70 academic institutions and 25 companies, locally and internationally, with close to 20 licensing deals executed.

The Centre will continue to champion public-private partnerships in the drug development industry. EDDC will allow for better coordination and optimised use of public sector resources, giving industry partners and Singapore greater ability to translate discoveries into new medicines for patients.

EDDC possesses a full range of drug discovery capabilities, including assay development, high throughput screening, antibody cloning, medicinal chemistry and ADME/toxicology. These capabilities allow EDDC to identify drug hits and leads, and develop them to the preclinical candidate stage in-house. In addition, EDDC enables translational drug development activities by having the internal expertise to support candidates through First-in-Human/Patient Phase 1 studies as well as being able to conduct Proof-of-Mechanism or Proof-of-Concept Studies.

About the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)

The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) is Singapore's lead public sector R&D agency, spearheading economic-oriented research to advance scientific discovery and develop innovative technology. Through open innovation, we collaborate with our partners in both the public and private sectors to benefit society.

As a Science and Technology Organisation, A*STAR bridges the gap between academia and industry. Our research creates economic growth and jobs for Singapore, and enhances lives by contributing to societal benefits such as improving outcomes in healthcare, urban living, and sustainability.

We play a key role in nurturing and developing a diversity of talent and leaders in our Agency and research entities, the wider research community and industry. A*STAR's R&D activities span biomedical sciences and physical sciences and engineering, with research entities primarily located in Biopolis and Fusionopolis. For ongoing news, visit www.a-star.edu.sg.

Follow us on
– Facebook https://www.facebook.com/HQastar/
– LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/company/a-star
– Instagram https://www.instagram.com/astarsingapore/
– YouTube https://www.youtube.com/astartv

About Duke-NUS Medical School

Duke-NUS is Singapore's flagship graduate entry medical school, established in 2005 with a strategic, government-led partnership between two world-class institutions: Duke University School of Medicine and the National University of Singapore (NUS). Through an innovative curriculum, students at Duke-NUS are nurtured to become multi-faceted 'Clinicians Plus' poised to steer the healthcare and biomedical ecosystem in Singapore and beyond. A leader in ground-breaking research and translational innovation, Duke-NUS has gained international renown through its five signature research programmes and nine centres. The enduring impact of its discoveries is amplified by its successful Academic Medicine partnership with Singapore Health Services (SingHealth), Singapore's largest healthcare group. This strategic alliance has spawned 15 Academic Clinical Programmes, which harness multi-disciplinary research and education to transform medicine and improve lives. For more information, please visit www.duke-nus.edu.sg.

[1] "First Patient First Visit" is a term used in the pharmaceutical industry to refer to the administration of the first dose of a compound or drug product to the first patient at his or her first visit in a clinical trial.
[2] "First made-in-Singapore cancer drug enters clinical testing:" A*STAR press release, July 16, 2015. National Archives of Singapore.
[3] POLARIS (Personalized OMIC Lattice for Advanced Research and Improving Stratification) https://www.a-star.edu.sg/polaris/

Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com

Captiva Verde Announces Esmeralda Agreement with Mexican Health Care Workers Union for up to USD$142 Million per Year of Annual Product Sales

Coquitlam, British Columbia, Jul 28, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – Captiva Verde Land Corp. (CSE: PWR) (OTC: CPIVF) (the "Company" or "Captiva Verde"), is pleased to announce that further to its news release of October 2, 2019, where Captiva Verde has executed a share exchange agreement to acquire Salud Esmeralda de Mexico SA de CV, ("Esmeralda") where Esmeralda holds a comprehensive pharmaceutical license to sell, market and distribute an entire suite of 300+ pharmaceutical, health, wellness and veterinarian products which include all narcotic, psychoactive and non-psychoactive drugs listed under Groups I, II & III in Mexico, Esmeralda has today executed an agreement with the Chairman of both the 380,000 member Health Care Workers Union in Mexico and the broader 1.2 Million member Union Federation, whereby Esmeralda can expressly distribute and sell medicinal health and wellness products to the Union Federation on a direct basis, with payment from the Union.





The Amount outlined in the agreement is for up to 1.2 Million members per month at between MXN $160 to MXN $220 per month, (between MXN $2.3 Billion to MXN $3.2 Billion per year) or up to USD $142,000,000 per year of product sales. (based on 30 day MXN-USD of 22.3) Captiva Verde is 75% complete in constructing its brand new drug manufacturing facility in Mexico for preparation of manufacturing and sales to the Union Federation this coming November. Anticipated Gross Profit is 40%. The complete cost of the new building is USD $750,000.

The Share Exchange Agreement between Esmeralda and Captiva Verde calls for the exchange of 80 Million shares subject to a strict pooling Agreement. Jeff Ciachurski, the CEO of Captiva Verde will receive 22.4 Million of those shares in this agreement. The Share Exchange Agreement and its resolutions are currently waiting for the filing of a signature verification process from the Mexican Consulate in Vancouver. Covid19 had previously delayed this basic administrative function. Final approval is then subject to the Canadian Securities Exchange once the Mexican Consulate has verified the Canadian resolutions including the corporate documents of Captiva Verde.

The exact wording in the Share Exchange Agreement reads:
https://tinyurl.com/yxvsvmdj

Jeff Ciachurski, the CEO of Captiva Verde, states: "This is an extremely significant milestone in the history of the Company. Without question, this agreement transforms Captiva Verde as a player in the legal health and wellness business, as we execute this function to one unified buyer, avoiding middlemen, agents, dealers and brokers, offering Mexican Union Members significant cost savings that are not available in the wholesale or retail market."

On Behalf of the Board of Directors
"Jeff Ciachurski"
Jeffrey Ciachurski
Chief Executive Officer and Director
Cell: (949) 903-5906
www.captivaverdecorp.com
E-mail: westernwind@shaw.ca

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward Looking Information

This release includes certain statements that may be deemed "forward-looking statements". All statements in this release, other than statements of historical facts, that address events or developments that the Company expects to occur, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts and are generally, but not always, identified by the words "expects", "plans", "anticipates", "believes", "intends", "estimates", "projects", "potential" and similar expressions, or that events or conditions "will", "would", "may", "could" or "should" occur. Although the Company believes the expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results may differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause the actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include regulatory actions, market prices, and continued availability of capital and financing, and general economic, market or business conditions. Investors are cautioned that any such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results or developments may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on the beliefs, estimates and opinions of the Company's management on the date the statements are made. Except as required by applicable securities laws, the Company undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements in the event that management's beliefs, estimates or opinions, or other factors, should change.

To view the source version of this press release, please visit https://www.newsfilecorp.com/release/60586

Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com

Impact Biomedical initiates Quantum Research Program to solve the Patent Cliff

SINGAPORE, Jul 27, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – SGX-listed Singapore eDevelopment Limited's (SeD; SGX:40V) wholly-owned subsidiary Impact Biomedical Inc. ("Impact"), announced today the initiation of Quantum, their research program designed to solve the impending pharmaceutical patent cliff threat.

Impact Biomedical's transition to the Quantum research program comes on the heels of the completion of the research and development stage of its existing biodefense intellectual portfolio, which is now moving to the licensing and commercialization phase. The portfolio, valued by independent experts at approximately US$1.39 billion as announced by the Group on 1 June 2020 includes: Linebacker, a universal therapeutic designed to shadow the Panacea Project, a US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) program to provide novel, multi-target therapeutics for unmet physiological needs; 3F BioFragrance, designed for the Open Air Defense Initiative, a strategy to protect locations where large numbers of people gather or transit; and Equivir, an OTC medication designed as an antiviral treatment and prophylactic comprising polyphenols that are GRAS or Generally Recognized as Safe, meaning its safety and behaviour in humans is already well understood and therefore is designed to proceed directly to human trials.

The patent cliff is a severe threat to pharmaceutical companies. The patent cliff arises when patents for blockbuster drugs expire without being replaced with new drugs, pharmaceutical companies experience an abrupt decrease in revenue. This depletes financial resources needed for the development of new therapeutics, which in turn reduces overall pharmaceutical innovation globally including crucial research into new methods to prevent and treat illnesses. The global pharmaceutical market research firm EvaluatePharma estimates that the patent cliff puts approximately US$198 billion in revenue at risk between 2019 and 2024[1]. Typical drug development uses schemes that have become less and less tenable. For example, drugs based on molecules found in cannabis are largely unpatentable due to the vast body of published research on new molecules derived from cannabis. Most existing techniques have already been contemplated. Without the patentability of the foregoing, the resources needed to develop a new drug based on cannabis cannot be secured.

Impact, through their strategic partner Global Research and Discovery Group Sciences ("GRDG"), has created a solution called Quantum, a new frontier in pharmaceutical development. Quantum is a new class of medicinal chemistry that uses advanced methods to boost efficacy and persistence of natural compounds and existing drugs while maintaining the safety profile of the original molecules. Instead of modifying functional groups, as is typically done presently in drug discovery, this new technique alters the behavior of molecules at the sub-molecular level. GRDG estimates that 65% of the World Health Organization Essential Medicines List can be improved and re-patented using Quantum. This approach can be used to enhance and patent natural compounds which includes many substances used in traditional medicines around the world.

This research follows the success of GRDG's recently completed exploratory program to address biomedical threats including the current COVID-19 pandemic which produced the 3F Antimicrobial BioFragrance, the universal therapeutic Linebacker, and the antiviral OTC medication Equivir, which is moving to human clinical trials. These inventions form the core of Impact's suite of next generation medical technology that was recently valued at approximately US$1.39 Billion by independent experts.

GRDG's Chief Scientific Advisor is Dr. Roscoe M. Moore, Jr., the former United States Assistant Surgeon General and former Epidemic Intelligence Service Officer at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Dr. Moore said, "A new direction in drug discovery is sorely needed and Quantum has the potential to revive innovation and development of lifesaving pharmaceuticals."

GRDG's Chief Strategy Advisor is Lieutenant Colonel William H. Lyerly Jr., a retired U.S. Army Medical Service Corps Officer, as well as a retired Career Senior Executive / Scientific Professional (ST), with decorated civilian service as a senior official within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and the U.S. Executive Office of the President (White House). Lieutenant Colonel Lyerly said, "Continued innovation in drug discovery is vital to combat new dangers to human health such as the current COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. Quantum can improve the drug development industry and enable scores of new solutions."

Impact Biomedical Chairman, Mr. Chan Heng Fai said, "Today, the difficulty in obtaining a pharmaceutical patent and retaining market exclusivity after it expires thwarts the momentum required by pharmaceutical companies to spur greater innovation. Backed by our newly established Quantum solution, we are proud to lead the field by bringing real and cutting-edge solutions to this immense global health challenge. In due time, we believe that Quantum will provide a practical solution for pharmaceutical companies to extend the patent life of their existing drug portfolio, thereby reducing abrupt declines in revenue following the expiration of patents. More importantly, they will be able to focus their resources on developing new, innovative drugs to treat and prevent illnesses for society at-large."

Daryl Thompson, Director of Scientific Initiatives and founder of GRDG, said, "The patent cliff represents a significant crisis in pharmaceutical innovation. The primary cause of the crisis is that most techniques for modifying natural molecules to pharmaceutical grade products are essentially 'played out.'

"Another way to explain this is that most of the methods to make drugs have already been published in scientific papers or rationalized in long expired patents. This means that these methods can render the development of new, novel compounds unpatentable. It is essential for a new drug in development qualify for patent protection due to the high costs of bringing a single compound to market. The medium cost of bringing a drug to market today is roughly US$985 million.

"Previous strategies for increasing the potency of a natural compound to pharmaceutically therapeutic levels employed the used of other molecular modification schemes. These techniques typically included standard practices such as altering functional groups, the addition or substitution of halogens and or the inclusion of lipid structures. The goal of these modifications would be to increase stimulation or inhibition of the molecule against its target site as well as increase bioavailability. Unfortunately, these effective techniques are being rendered moot due to lack of patentability due to prior disclosure.

"We have devised a method to break through this barrier and open a new path for drug development. We will be moving past macro-molecular techniques as mentioned above and will go deeper into the sub-atomic. Here we can look at molecular modification from the perspective of quantum physics. For instance, our previous work on the Linebacker program utilized halogenation to create electron rich portions in the molecule to increase its therapeutic potential. This technique, called sigma-hole generation or X-bonding, is well understood in the scientific community. However, once we disclose how we used this technique in a patent to create a new drug, it can never be patented again once the patents are expired.

"Quantum molecular modifications approach this problem from the perspective of manipulating the sub-atomic electron balance as a whole in consideration of the sum of both kinetic and potential energies within the molecular state. The exploitation of modification of this type by total energy configurations allows the use of quantum principles such as the Hamiltonian Operator as tools for understanding how to manipulate subatomic forces to increase a molecule's effectiveness as potential new life saving drug.

"This approach allows for a virtually endless array of methods that can lead to a new era in drug discovery possibilities. With our Biodefense mission complete, we will now move forward with the initialization of our Quantum Applications Research Platform. We expect to deliver the first 6 Quantum molecules to research institutes within three business quarters."

This new research will propel global drug discovery forward and foster increased innovation and ultimately better health worldwide.

There is currently no outlay of funds required for the initiation of Impact BioMedical's Quantum research program. Depending on the state of development of Quantum, SeD will fund its development through a variety of sources ranging from its internal source of funds and/or externally such as through funds generated from financial institutions as well as potential debt and/or equity fund raising.

Shareholders and potential investors of SeD should note that there is no certainty or assurance as at the date of this Press Release that Impact BioMedical's biodefense intellectual portfolio will be licensed or close to monetisation. Shareholders and potential investors of SeD are advised to read this Press Release and any further announcements made by SeD carefully. Shareholders and potential investors of SeD are advised to refrain from taking any action with respect to their securities in SeD which may be prejudicial to their interests, and to exercise caution when dealing in the securities of SeD. Shareholders and potential investors of SeD should consult their stockbrokers, bank managers, solicitors or other professional advisers if they have any doubt about the actions they should take.

About Singapore eDevelopment Limited
Incorporated on 9 September 2009 and listed on the Singapore Exchange in July 2010, Singapore eDevelopment Limited is involved in (i) property development and investments primarily in the United States and Western Australia; (ii) information technology-related businesses; (iii) development, research, testing, manufacturing, licensing and distribution of biomedical products; and (iv) investment activities. For more information, please visit: www.SeD.com.sg or email contact@sed.com.sg.

About Impact BioMedical, Inc.
Impact BioMedical, Inc. ("Impact BioMedical") is a wholly-owned direct subsidiary of Global BioMedical Pte. Ltd., which in turn is a wholly-owned direct subsidiary of Singapore eDevelopment Limited, a company listed on the Singapore Exchange.

Impact BioMedical strives to leverage its scientific know-how and intellectual property rights to provide solutions that have been plaguing the biomedical field for decades. By tapping into the scientific expertise of GRDG Sciences, LLC. and Australian Exchange-listed Holista CollTech Limited, Impact BioMedical pledges to undertake a concerted effort in the R&D, drug discovery and development for the prevention, inhibition, and treatment of neurological, oncological and immuno related diseases.

About GRDG Sciences, LLC.
GRDG Sciences, LLC is an advanced research team formed in Florida by natural products discovery drug research scientist, Daryl Thompson. For more information, please visit: http://www.globalrdg.com.

[1] EvaluatePharma(R) World Preview 2019, Outlook to 2024 Report, 12th Edition, June 2019 https://tinyurl.com/y3lbhutm

Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com

Aptorum Group Becomes the First Nasdaq Listed Biopharmaceutical Company Admitted to Trading on Euronext Paris Stock Exchange Under the Ticker Symbol APM

HONG KONG, Jul 27, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – Aptorum Group Limited (Nasdaq: APM) ("Aptorum Group"), a biopharmaceutical company focusing on the development of novel therapeutics to address global unmet medical needs, today is pleased to announce that its Class A Ordinary Shares has commenced trading on the Professional Compartment of Euronext in Paris under the Euronext ticker symbol "APM" and ISIN Code: KYG6096M1069. Aptorum Group's Class A Ordinary Shares continues to be listed on the Nasdaq Global Market under the symbol APM.



Mr. Darren Lui, President and Executive Director (left), at the Euronext Paris Stock Exchange ceremony



The 7,950,986 Class A Ordinary Shares of Aptorum Group got admitted to trading on Euronext market in Paris after Aptorum Group received a visa for its prospectus granted by the French Autorite des Marches Financiers on 16 July 2020.

Reed Smith LLP acts as Aptorum Group's legal advisor and listing agent. BNP Paribas Securities Services acts as Aptorum Group's trading agent.

About Aptorum Group
Aptorum Group Limited (Nasdaq: APM) is a pharmaceutical company dedicated to developing and commercializing novel therapeutics to tackle current unmet medical needs. Aptorum Group's current drug pipeline includes indications in orphan diseases, infectious diseases and metabolic diseases, a number of which are targeted to enter clinical trial phases. Aptorum Group is also launching a women's health supplement, dioscorea opposita bioactive nutraceutical tablets marketed under the brand name NativusWell.

For more information about Aptorum Group, please visit our website: www.aptorumgroup.com.

Disclaimer and Forward-Looking Statements

This press release does not constitute an offer to sell or a solicitation of offers to buy any securities of Aptorum Group.

This annoucement is not a prospectus within the meaning of the Regulation (EU) n 2017/1129 of 14 June 2017 as amended by Regulations Delegated (EU) n 2019/980 of 14 March 2019 and n 2019/979 of 14 March 2019.

This press release includes statements concerning Aptorum Group Limited and its future expectations, plans and prospects that constitute "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the US Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. For this purpose, any statements contained herein that are not statements of historical fact may be deemed to be forward-looking statements. In some cases, you can identify forward-looking statements by terms such as "may," "should," "expects," "plans," "anticipates," "could," "intends," "target," "projects," "contemplates," "believes," "estimates," "predicts," "potential," or "continue," or the negative of these terms or other similar expressions. Aptorum Group has based these forward-looking statements, which include statements regarding projected timelines for application submissions and trials, largely on its current expectations and projections about future events and trends that it believes may affect its business, financial condition and results of operations. These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this press release and are subject to a number of risks, uncertainties and assumptions including, without limitation, risks related to its announced management and organizational changes, the continued service and availability of key personnel, its ability to expand its product assortments by offering additional products for additional consumer segments, development results, the company's anticipated growth strategies, anticipated trends and challenges in its business, and its expectations regarding, and the stability of, its supply chain, and the risks more fully described in Aptorum Group's Form 20-F and other filings that Aptorum Group may make with the SEC in the future and the prospectus that received the French Autorite des Marches Financiers visa n 20-352 on 16 July 2020. As a result, the projections included in such forward-looking statements are subject to change and could be materially different from those described herein. Aptorum Group assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statements contained in this press release as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
This press release is provided "as is" without any representation or warranty of any kind.

Investor relations contacts
Aptorum Group limited
Investor Relations Department:
Tel: +852 3953 7700
Email: investor.relations@aptorumgroup.com

Actifin – Financial Communications Europe
Investor relations
Ghislaine Gasparetto
ggasparetto@actifin.fr
+33 1 56 88 11 22

Redchip – Financial Communications United States
Investor relations
RedChip Companies, Inc.
dave@redchip.com
+1 407 491 4498



Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com

MP Biomedicals and A*STAR Co-Develop Rapid Antibody Point-of-care Test Kit for SARS-CoV-2

SINGAPORE, Jul 24, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – MP Biomedicals Asia Pacific Pte Ltd, a diagnostic corporation which has been operating for over 30 years focusing on various infectious disease testing development and manufacturing, today announced the successful development of a rapid antibody test kit for COVID-19, in collaboration with the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR).



ASSURE(R) SARS-CoV-2 IgG/IgM Rapid Test Kit
(Photo credit: MP Biomedicals)


MP Biomedicals Diagnostics division's Research and Development team with their ASSURE(R) SARS-CoV-2 IgG/IgM Rapid Test kits. Two devices shown reflects positive IgG antibodies result (marked, on right) and a negative reading (unmarked, on left)
From left: Ivy Teoh; Delynn Xu; Zee Hong Goh
(Photo credit: MP Biomedicals)


Scientists from A*STAR's Institute of Molecular and Cell Biology (IMCB) who were involved in the development of the ASSURE(R) rapid antibody test kit for COVID-19. From L-R: Ms Carol Leong, Research Officer; Associate Professor Tan Yee Joo, Joint Senior Principal Investigator; Dr Wang Yaju, Senior Research Officer (Photo credit: A*STAR)



Named the ASSURE® SARS-CoV-2 IgG/IgM rapid test, or ASSURE® in short, the test kit detects antibodies produced by the human immune system in response to exposure to SARS-CoV-2. It produces accurate results in as little as 15 minutes, and employs a lateral flow format similar to those used in home pregnancy tests. ASSURE® was developed and manufactured in Singapore. It can be deployed at or near the point of patient care, and has been distributed to regions such as Europe, Africa and South America. MP Biomedicals intends to file for Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) from the US FDA for this product as well.

The test kit detects IgG and IgM antibodies, which are produced by the body to combat SARS-CoV-2, from samples of human blood, plasma or serum. Studies have shown that levels of IgG and IgM appear to be correlated with the severity of COVID-19, thus they are good biomarkers for confirming positive or past infection.

Aligned with the current recommendation by the World Health Organization, point-of-care or rapid serology tests including ASSURE® rapid antibody test kit should not be used in the clinical diagnosis of COVID-19 infections or in the evaluation of persons with acute respiratory symptoms, especially within the first 14 days of illness. This is to avoid giving patients false reassurance that they do not have the infection, arising from a negative result. However, ASSURE® rapid antibody test kit can help to determine whether an individual has been previously exposed to the virus and generated antibodies as a result. This can help identify asymptomatic individuals or those with only mild symptoms who were not subjected to RT-PCR testing.

The technology behind the ASSURE® rapid antibody test kit utilises proprietary synthetic SARS-CoV-2 proteins. These proteins bind to the IgG and IgM antibodies if the antibodies are present in the specimen samples. MP Biomedicals used it to develop the product based on their lateral flow platform. The Diagnostics Development (DxD) Hub, a national platform hosted by A*STAR's commercialisation arm, A*ccelerate, co-developed the validation protocols and quality controls. The ASSURE® rapid antibody test kit was evaluated by the National University Hospital's (NUH) Department of Laboratory Medicine, and demonstrated good results for both serum and whole blood. The sensitivity of the kit performed well as compared to commercial immunoassays, when tested with convalescent blood from recovered COVID-19 patients in the clinic.

The ASSURE® rapid antibody test kit has been granted Provisional Authorisation by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) for its intended use in Singapore.

Dr Delynn Xu, Senior R&D Manager, MP Biomedicals, said: "The development and manufacture of ASSURE® is a successful collaboration between MP Biomedicals and A*STAR through tremendous joint work. We are not the first one in the market but chasing the best performance is always our primary goal. With this rapid antibody test kit, we are proud to contribute to the global fight against COVID-19."

"We identified a human monoclonal antibody which binds to SARS-CoV-2, and it proved to be useful during the early development phase of this rapid test kit," said Associate Professor Tan Yee Joo, Joint Senior Principal Investigator, Institute of Molecular & Cell Biology (IMCB), A*STAR, and National University of Singapore's Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine. "IMCB is glad to assist our industry partner in their COVID-19 product development," she added.

Dr Sidney Yee, Chief Executive Officer, DxD Hub, A*STAR, said: "It is absolutely critical that we continue to transfer R&D know-how to biotech companies, to scale up and let more labs tap on this diagnostics test kit to screen patients. This rapid serological point-of-care test kit for COVID-19 by MP Biomedicals and A*STAR will complement global efforts to develop more efficient diagnostics, as the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve."

Mr Ng Boon Heong, Chief Executive Officer, Temasek Foundation, said: "We seek to actively pilot innovative solutions for community care. This project is an opportunity for us to work together with companies with a local presence, such as MP Biomedicals; R&D institutions such as A*STAR; medical partners such as NUH to enable development and access to point of care rapid serological test kits. These kits help identify segments of our communities that are recovering from or previously infected by SARS-CoV-2 to ensure their safe return back to work. This is one of the cases where we placed an initial commitment to help MP Biomedicals scale up their production locally, and piloted its use in our local community."

Relevant images can be downloaded from this link: https://tinyurl.com/y2ckta7w
Fact Sheet: http://www.acnnewswire.com/clientreports/598/FactSheet.pdf

For media queries and clarifications, please contact:
Haris Ong
Diagnostics Product Manager, MP Biomedicals Asia Pacific
DID: +65 6394 7678
E-mail: haris.ong@mpbio.com

Mr Owen Sia
Corporate Communications, A*STAR
HP: +65 9273 7432
E-mail: owen_sia@hq.a-star.edu.sg

About MP Biomedicals Asia Pacific Pte Ltd

MP Biomedicals is a global corporation, with headquarters in California, USA, and MP Biomedicals Asia Pacific Pte Ltd is its APAC regional headquarters as well as the hub for diagnostic product line. With over 50 years of experience in life science and diagnostics, the company is dedicated to give innovative, quality tools to aid in research for ground breaking discoveries and disease control. For more information about MP Biomedicals, please visit this link: https://www.mpbio.com/about-us

About the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)

The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) is Singapore's lead public sector R&D agency, spearheading economic-oriented research to advance scientific discovery and develop innovative technology. Through open innovation, we collaborate with partners in both the public and private sectors to benefit society.

As a Science and Technology Organisation, A*STAR bridges the gap between academia and industry. Our research creates economic growth and jobs for Singapore, and enhances lives by contributing to societal benefits such as improving outcomes in healthcare, urban living, and sustainability.

We play a key role in nurturing and developing a diversity of talent and leaders in our Agency and research entities, the wider research community and industry. A*STAR's R&D activities span biomedical sciences and physical sciences and engineering, with research entities primarily located in Biopolis and Fusionopolis. For ongoing news, visit www.a-star.edu.sg. For more information about the DxD Hub, please visit this link: https://tinyurl.com/y2zgz7wj

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Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com

SinoMab entered into Strategic Collaboration with D2M

HONG KONG, Jul 23, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – SinoMab BioScience Limited ("SinoMab" of the "Company", stock code: 3681.HK), a Hong Kong-based biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the research, development, manufacturing and commercialization of therapeutics for the treatment of immunological diseases, is pleased to announce that SinoMab and D2M Biotherapeutics Limited ("D2M") have entered into a Research, Development and Commercialization Agreement ("R&D Agreement") for long term collaboration for the identification of novel drug targets. Other than the R&D agreement, the Company is also going to invest totally USD 5 million in D2M as pre-A1 round investment.

Dr. Nan BING, one of the founders of D2M, served as a Senior Director of Immunogenetics of Pfizer Inc., (U.S.A.). Dr. BING was a founding team member of the genetic data department of Pfizer and has extensive experience in discovering biomarkers through clinical data and identifying drug treatment targets through various genetic data.

Under the R&D Agreement, SinoMab and D2M enter into long-term collaboration where SinoMab is entitled to conduct research, development and commercialization of qualified drug targets, which are chosen by the Company from the original results of D2M's target identification works according to a prioritized target-selection mechanism ("Collaboration"). D2M shall identify novel drug targets for the Company to consider further development upon satisfactory evaluation by the Company on the scientific merits and commercial potential of these discoveries.

Dr. Shui On LEUNG, the Executive Director, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of SinoMab, remarked: "Our Collaboration and investment in D2M are intended to expand the scope of SinoMab's existing capabilities and values by ramifying into areas of novel target identification against which antibodies can be developed for the treatment of diseases of unmet medical needs. We are optimistic that through the synergies created by our Collaboration, D2M can contribute to the success of our future business development. The newly added drug target identification platform will make SinoMab in line with most other well-known biopharmaceutical companies which have had substantial investment in this area. It is a suitable timing for SinoMab to strategically collaborate with D2M for novel drug target identification and move-up its value chain."

With the additional value created by D2M on the upstream research and development process in the biotech industry, such as target identification and therapeutics and therapies discovery, contributed to the Company. A strategic collaboration will be established by the parties, where SinoMab and D2M can combine their strengths and resources to create greater business value. The Company believes that the Collaboration marks a major step forward for the Company to fulfill the Company's commitment to research, development, manufacturing and commercialization of therapeutics for the treatment of immunological and other debilitating disease.

About D2M Biotherapeutics Limited
D2M Biotherapeutics Limited ("D2M") is a company specialized in the development of a genetics-driven target identification platform and the discovery, development and commercialization of therapeutics and therapies against those targets for treatment or prevention of human diseases.

About SinoMab BioScience Limited
SinoMab BioScience Limited ("SinoMab" or the "Company", stock code: 3681.HK) is dedicated to the research, development, manufacturing and commercialization of therapeutics for the treatment of immunological diseases. The Company's flagship product SM03 is a potential global first-in-target mAb against CD22 for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis and is currently in Phase III clinical trial for rheumatoid arthritis in China, which has been recognized as one of the significant special projects of Significant New Drugs Development of the Twelfth Five-Year Plan Period and the Thirteenth Five-Year Plan Period. In addition, the Company possesses other potential first-in-target and first-in-class drug candidates, some of which are already in clinical stage, with their indications covering rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, asthma, and other diseases with major unmet clinical needs.



Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com

Genor Biopharma Announced the Acceptance of New Drug Application for Geptanolimab and the Appointment of Mr. CHEN Wende as Chief Operation Officer

HONG KONG, Jul 21, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – Genor Biopharma Co. Inc, a pre-commercial stage biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing oncology and autoimmune therapeutics, announced that the new drug application (NDA) for Geptanolimab, a novel PD-1 mAb drug candidate, has been accepted by the National Medical Products Administration ("NMPA") for the treatment of Peripheral T cell Lymphoma (PTCL).

On the same day, Genor Biopharma announced the appointment of Mr. CHEN Wende as Chief Operation Officer. In this role, Mr. CHEN will oversee commercialization and prepare for launches of late-stage drug candidates.

Mr. CHEN brings over 20 years of experience in biopharmaceutical industry, focusing on sales and marketing and business operation at Roche, AstraZeneca, and Pfizer in China. Mr. CHEN was most recently Chief Commercial Officer at a well-known biotech company. Before that, Mr. CHEN served as Vice President at Roche China, overseeing Corporate Affairs, Market Access and Channel Management for a number of key drugs including Herceptin, MabThera, Avastin, Tarceva and Zelboraf. Mr. CHEN also served as Senior Vice President at AstraZeneca from 2010 and as Senior Sales Director at Pfizer from 2000.

"We are excited to appoint Mr. CHEN as COO of Genor Biopharma. We are looking to file NDAs for a number of our late-stage drug candidates in the near term," commented Dr. GUO, Chief Executive Officer of Genor Biopharma, "With over 20 years of experience in drug commercialization and deep insight of the landscape, Mr. CHEN will build our in-house commercialization team and lead our drug launches with differentiated strategy and drive our transformation into a biopharma company."

About JHBP (CY) Holdings Limited ("Genor Biopharma")
Established in December 2007, JHBP (CY) Holdings Limited is a biopharmaceutical powerhouse focusing on developing and commercializing oncology and autoimmune drugs. The Company has been strategically focused on major therapeutic areas with substantial unmet medical needs. At present, the Company has more than 10 drug candidates, 10 of which have entered the clinical development stage. The Company's pipeline products are mainly deployed in the field of cancer and other major diseases and have established a series of mature technology platforms in antibody drug research, development and manufacturing to serve patients in China and around the world. The Company's leadership team boasts more than 20 years of industry experience in global biopharmaceutical companies such as Pfizer, Merck, Amgen and AbbVie with proven track record and a well-balanced combination of expertise. The Company currently has around 400 employees across 3 sites in China – Shanghai Zhangjiang, Yunnan Yuxi, and Beijing office, as well as lab in South San Francisco, US, among which 80% are R&D and clinical specialists.



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Antengene Corporation Closes US$97 Million Series C Financing to Support Ongoing Drug Development and Preparations for Potential Commercialization

SHANGHAI, CHINA, Jul 20, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – Antengene Corporation, a leading innovative hematology and oncology-focused biopharmaceutical company dedicated to discovering, developing and commercializing global first-in-class and best-in-class therapies, today announced that it has successfully closed US$97 million in Series C financing.

The financing was led by Fidelity Management & Research Company LLC with additional support from new investors including GL Ventures (an affiliate of Hillhouse Capital), GIC, and a large, reputable long-term investor. Existing investors including Qiming Venture Partners and Boyu Capital also participated.

"We appreciate the recognition and trust from these prestigious investment institutions. This round of financing has drawn support from among the world's largest asset managers, top-tier healthcare investors widely recognized in the capital markets, and strong continuous support from our existing investors. This is an important milestone to reinforce Antengene's capabilities to bring cutting-edge therapies to help patients with life-threatening diseases in the Asia Pacific regions and around the world." said Dr. Jay Mei, Founder, Chairman and CEO of Antengene.

Proceeds from the Series C financing will be primarily used to fund the continuing clinical development of Antengene's robust pipeline of hematology and oncology therapies, expanding in-house research and development capabilities and strengthening the commercial infrastructures in APAC markets. To date, Antengene has made significant progress with its broad pipeline of six clinical-stage programs and six pre-clinical stage oncology assets:

– ATG-010 (selinexor) is the first and only oral selective inhibitor of nuclear export (SINE) compound in the world. In July 2019, the U.S. FDA approved selinexor in combination with low-dose dexamethasone for the treatment of adult patients with relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma (RRMM). In June 2020, selinexor was approved by the U.S. FDA as a treatment for patients with relapsed/refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (R/R DLBCL). Currently, the registration clinical trials of ATG-010 in RRMM and R/R DLBCL are ongoing in China. The compound is also in late clinical development for various other hematologic malignancies and solid tumors (including KRAS mutant tumors). Pre-clinical studies demonstrated that inhibition of nuclear protein export through XPO1 can effectively treat tumors with such mutation.

– ATG-008 (onatasertib) is a second-generation dual mTORC1/2 inhibitor presently studied in multi-regional clinical trials for the treatment of advanced hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC), as well as non-small-cell lung cancer (NSCLC), gynecological malignancies and other cancers as a single agent or in combination with an anti-PD-1 antibody.

– ATG-016 (eltanexor) is a second-generation oral selective inhibitor of nuclear export protein XPO1 presently studied in myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS) as well as various types of solid tumors, such as colorectal cancer (CRC) and prostate cancer (PrC).

– ATG-019 is a first-in-class PAK4/NAMPT dual-target inhibitor presently studied in a number of clinical trials including non-Hodgkin's lymphoma (NHL), colorectal cancer, NSCLC, and melanoma. In addition, pre-clinical studies have demonstrated that ATG-019 in combination with anti-PD-1 antibodies can effectively improve the anti-tumor activity and is effective in treating patients that become resistant to anti-PD-1 therapy.

– ATG-527 (verdinexor) is an innovative compound in clinical studies as a potential treatment for anti-viral infection and autoimmune diseases – such as Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) infection, cytomegalovirus (CMV) infection, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). Phase I healthy volunteer study of the compound has been completed.

– ATG-017 is a potent and selective small molecule extracellular signal-regulated kinases 1 and 2 (ERK1/2) inhibitor in clinical development for the treatment of various solid tumors, non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and multiple myeloma.

In addition, the Antengene drug discovery team is focused on the research and pre-clinical development of innovative small molecules, monoclonal and bi-specific antibodies to treat cancer.

About Antengene

Antengene is a biopharmaceutical company with integrated drug discovery, clinical development, manufacturing and commercialization anchored in the Asia Pacific regions and with a global layout, aiming to provide the most advanced first-in-class/best-in-class anti-cancer drugs and other treatments for patients in China, the rest of Asia and around the world. In April 2017, Celgene (now officially acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb, and become the world's top ten pharmaceutical company after the merger), a global leading innovative biopharmaceutical company became a founding partner and obtained an equity position as an investor in Antengene. Over the past 3 years, Antengene has built a product pipeline of 12 clinical and pre-clinical stage programs, obtained 7 IND approvals with 10 ongoing cross-regional clinical trials in the Asia Pacific regions. The vision of Antengene, "Treating Patients Beyond Borders", is to meet the unmet medical needs of patients in the Asia Pacific regions and around the world through research & development and commercialization of first-in-class/best-in-class drugs. For more information, please visit www.antengene.com.

About Fidelity

Fidelity's mission is to inspire better futures and deliver better outcomes for the customers and businesses we serve. With assets under administration of $8.1 trillion, including discretionary assets of $3.3 trillion as of May 31, 2020, we focus on meeting the unique needs of a diverse set of customers: helping more than 32 million people invest their own life savings, 22,000 businesses manage employee benefit programs, as well as providing more than 13,500 institutions with investment and technology solutions to invest their own clients' money. Privately held for more than 70 years, Fidelity employs more than 40,000 associates who are focused on the long-term success of our customers. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit https://www.fidelity.com/about-fidelity/our-company.

About GL Ventures (an affiliate of Hillhouse Capital)

GL Ventures focuses on innovative companies in healthcare, software services, consumer Internet, emerging consumer brands and services. The GL Ventures team is passionate about partnering with visionary entrepreneurs to create industry leaders that stand the test of time. GL Ventures is an affiliate of Hillhouse Capital, and we have been investing with innovators across the world since 2005. We were one of the earliest investors into some of the largest global companies today, including Beigene, Zoom, Meituan, JD, Woowa Brothers and many more.

About GIC

GIC is a leading global investment firm established in 1981 to manage Singapore's foreign reserves. A disciplined long-term value investor, GIC is uniquely positioned for investments across a wide range of asset classes, including real estate, private equity, equities and fixed income. GIC has investments in over 40 countries and has been investing in emerging markets for more than two decades. Headquartered in Singapore, GIC employs over 1,500 people across 10 offices in key financial cities worldwide. For more information about GIC, please visit www.gic.com.sg.

About Qiming Venture Partners

Founded in 2006, Qiming Venture Partners is a leading China venture capital firm with offices in Shanghai, Beijing, Suzhou, Shenzhen, Hong Kong, Seattle, Boston and San Francisco Bay Area. Currently Qiming Venture Partners manages nine US Dollar funds and five RMB funds with $5.3 billion assets under management. Since our establishment, we have invested in outstanding companies in the TMT and healthcare industries at the early and growing stages.

Since our debut, we have backed over 350 fast-growing and innovative companies. Over 110 companies are already listed on NYSE, NASDAQ, HKEx, Gretai Securities Market, Shanghai Stock Exchange and Shenzhen Stock Exchange, or achieved exit through M&A and other means. There are also over 30 portfolio companies that have achieved unicorn status. Many of our portfolio companies are today's most influential firms in their respective sectors, including Xiaomi (SEHK:1810), Meituan Dianping (SEHK:3690), Bilibili (NASDAQ:BILI), Roborock (SHSE:688169), Gan & Lee (SHSE: 603087), Tigermed (SZSE:300347), Zai Lab (NASDAQ:ZLAB), Venus MedTech (SEHK:2500), CanSino (SEHK:6185), Schrodinger (NASDAQ:SDGR), Sanyou Medical (SHSE:688085), AmoyDx (SZSE:300685), Berry Genomics (SZSE:000710), SinocellTech (SHSE: 688520), WeDoctor Group, UBTech among many others.

About Boyu Capital

Boyu Capital is one of the largest private investment firms in China. With offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Hong Kong, Boyu has provided long-term capital and operational expertise to some of the best-managed and most innovative companies across the media/technology, healthcare, consumer/retail, and financial services industries.

Forward-looking Statement

The forward-looking statements made in this article relate only to the events or information as of the date on which the statements are made in this article. Except as required by law, we undertake no obligation to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, after the date on which the statements are made or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events. You should read this article completely and with the understanding that our actual future results or performance may be materially different from what we expect. In this article, statements of, or references to, our intentions or those of any of our Directors or our Company are made as of the date of this article. Any of these intentions may alter in light of future development.



Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com

Hao Tian Development Plans to form Joint Venture to Conduct Research and Develop Cell-based and Biological Therapies for the Treatment of Liver Diseases

HONG KONG, Jul 14, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – Hao Tian Development Group Limited (HKEX Stock Code: 0474, "Hao Tian Development" or "the Group") a diversified investment holding company, through its subsidiary Aceso Life Sciences Holding Limited ("Aceso"), and Promethera Biosciences S.A./N.V. ("Promethera") today announced that the companies have entered into an agreement to form a joint venture ("Joint Venture Company").

Aceso and Promethera hold 60% and 40% of the equity in the Joint Venture Company, respectively. The Joint Venture Company is vested with the exclusive right to develop, register, distribute and commercialise Promethera's therapeutic products in China and Southeast Asia. Indications in which the products will be deployed include; Acute-on-Chronic Liver Failure (ACLF), Non-Alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH), Urea Cycle Disorder (UCD), liver cirrhosis and various autoimmune diseases and cancers. Promethera will manufacture and supply the therapeutic products, and provide ongoing technical support during development and commercialisation. The Joint Venture Company will investigate opportunities for cooperation with Itochu Corporation.

The Asia-Pacific region is home to some of the world's highest liver disease incidence and mortality rates. The number of deaths from liver cirrhosis reached 1.32 million globally in 2017, with China contributing 100,000 deaths and 7 million new patients annually. In addition, in 2018 there were 390,000 new cases of liver cancer in China, along with 370,000 liver cancer deaths, accounting for 47% of global liver cancer deaths. Hao Tian Development has been actively seeking opportunities to expand into the Life Science industry. The formation of the Joint Venture Company and the subsequent introduction of leading global cell therapy and antibody assets for the treatment of a wide variety of diseases in China and Southeast Asia marks a major milestone for the Group

About Promethera Biosciences S.A./N.V.
Promethera Biosciences S.A./N.V. was jointly founded in 2009 by Etienne Sokal, a member of the Belgian Royal Academy of Medicine and a professor at Universite catholique de Louvain (Belgium), and Sopartec S.A., the technology transfer and investment company of Universite catholique de Louvain. Promethera is an innovative biopharmaceutical company primarily focused on developing liver disease cell therapies with the potential to reduce the need for liver transplantation. Promethera's lead product candidate is HepaStem, a patented cell technology with immunomodulatory and anti-fibrotic properties. In addition to cell therapies (HepaStem and H2Stem), Promethera is actively developing an array of antibody-based therapeutics to provide patients with a complete suite of treatments for inflammatory disease and liver disease.

HepaStem is a stem cell biopharmaceutical, derived from healthy, ethically donated livers. The active ingredients of HepaStem are isolated and expanded at Promethera's current Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) manufacturing plant. HepaStem's lead indications are Acute-on-Chronic Liver Failure (ACLF), Non-alcoholic Steatohepatitis (NASH) and Urea Cycle Disorder (UCD). In 2019, HepaStem completed a European Phase 2a trial for use in ACLF, which was selected as a breakthrough discovery at the 2019 European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL). HepaStem is currently being assessed in a potentially pivotal European Phase 2b trial for use in ACLF. Additionally, Promethera is preparing to file an Investigational New Drug (IND) application in order to initiate European clinical trials assessing HepaStem's efficacy in Covid-19 associated Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS).

Promethera's other assets include; (1) H2Stem, a next-generation regenerative medicine derived from hepatobiliary mesenchymal progenitor cells, (2) Novotarg, a pre-clinical stage CD95/CD20 bispecific antibody for the treatment of cancer, and (3) Atrosimab, a pre-clinical stage TNF Receptor 1 monovalent antagonist antibody which will be deployed for the treatment of inflammatory disease and liver disease.

About Aceso Life Science Holding Limited
Aceso Life Science Holding Limited is a joint venture company established by Hao Tian Development Group Limited and Co-High Investment Management Company Limited, who hold 51% and 49% of the joint venture equity, respectively. Aceso Life Science's primary business goal is to introduce leading global life science assets to Greater China and Southeast Asia by acquiring intellectual property and undertaking R&D, distribution and commercialisation.



Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com

Novotech Webinar: Why the Asia-Pacific is Attracting 10,000 Oncology Trials and How Biotechs Can Tap the Region

SYDNEY, Jul 13, 2020 – (ACN Newswire) – The leading Asia-Pacific biotech specialist CRO Novotech is again collaborating with the prestigious biotech and pharma news platform Endpoints News. This webinar focusses on how to advance oncology clinical trials in the Asia-Pacific which is currently attracting 10,000 oncology studies (GlobalData).

The webinar will be led by Endpoints News Publisher Arsalan Arif. Participants will include leading experts from the Asia-Pacific region and a US biotech sponsor.

Webinar title: Advancing Oncology Trials in Asia-Pacific
Broadcast time: July 14th 2PM EST
Click to register: https://www2.novotech-cro.com/l/223242/2020-06-30/mttpv

There are currently about 10,000 oncology clinical trials, either ongoing or planned, in Asia-Pacific and about 50% of all industry-sponsored oncology trials in 2019 globally have an Asia-Pacific component (GlobalData).

Meanwhile, the number of industry-sponsored oncology trials initiated in Asia-Pacific has grown by over 10% on average annually between 2017 and 2019 (GlobalData).
Novotech has completed over 200 oncology trials.

According to Novotech:

"A growing number of biotechnology companies are looking at the Asia-Pacific region to run their clinical trials in oncology. While Australia and New Zealand are preferred locations to run early phase trials, sponsors often look at Asia for large late phase clinical studies. Moreover, clinical trials are often the only channel through which patients can get access to new oncology treatments in Asia which ultimately stimulates patient recruitment rates."

The webinar will also cover:
– The latest research and trends of oncology clinical trials globally and in Asia-Pacific
– The reasons why oncology clinical research sites in Asia have been less affected by the COVID-19 crisis than in other regions
– The benefit for biotechnology companies to involve sites in Asia-Pacific for oncology trials
– Feedback from sponsors and investigators

Novotech has teams on the ground in the key Asia-Pacific countries and has just signed its 30th Partnership agreement which is a program with leading medical institutions throughout the Asia-Pacific giving Novotech clients unique access to some of the top researchers, investigators and key opinion leaders.

About Novotech – https://novotech-cro.com

Novotech is internationally recognized as the leading regional full-service contract research organization (CRO) in Asia-Pacific. Novotech has been instrumental in the success of over a thousand Phase I – IV clinical trials for biotechnology companies. Novotech was established in 1996, with offices in 11 locations across the region, and site partnerships with major health institutions.

Novotech provides clinical development services across all clinical trial phases and therapeutic areas including: feasibility assessments; ethics committee and regulatory submissions, data management, statistical analysis, medical monitoring, safety services, central lab services, report write-up to ICH requirements, project and vendor management. Novotech obtained the ISO 27001 certification which is the best-known standard in the ISO family providing requirements for an Information Security Management System. Together with the ISO 9001 Quality Management system, Novotech aims at the highest IT security and quality standards for patients and biotechnology companies.

For RFP enquiries: Please fill out the form available at https://novotech-cro.com/talk-to-an-expert

Media Contact
David James
communications@novotech-cro.com
AU: +61 2 8218 2144
USA: +1 415 951 3228
Asia: +65 3159 3427

Copyright 2020 ACN Newswire. All rights reserved. http://www.acnnewswire.com