Oxford Biomedica announced two separate partnership agreements on the same day, one that sees Orchard Therapeutics utilising the company’s LentiStable technology and another unspecified company that will leverage its LentiVector platform.
The two latest deals arrive shortly after it had expanded an agreement with Juno Therapeutics for two new viral vector programmes, and after it had signed a three year agreement with AstraZeneca to manufacture its COVID-19 vaccine. All of the four deals were agreed in July, representing a busy month for the viral vector specialist.
Oxford Biomedica and Orchard have collaborated together over a long period, after establishing a partnership in November 2016. The latest extension sees Orchard Therapeutic use the LentiStable technology platform to develop a cell line capable of stably expressing lentiviral vectors.
Orchard plans to use the platform to create high-performing candidate clones for its investigational hemopoietic stem cell gene therapy, OTL-203. The gene therapy is a potential treatment for mucopolysaccharidosis type I Hurler’s syndrome, which has received a rare pediatric disease designation from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Oxford Biomedica states that the LentiStable technology is able to ensure cost effective manufacturing, a spokesperson for the company provided more details to BioPharma-Reporter: “The company’s cutting-edge, automated technologies enable us to streamline production, minimize process risks and reduce costs.
“Our proprietary robotic system, Cassius, uses state-of-the-art automation to screen and isolate up to 3,000 clones thereby enabling the identification of high titer lentiviral vectors producing clones in significantly reduced timelines, driving up efficiency and down costs of the overall manufacturing process.”
Unnamed CAR-T developer
Oxford Biomedica provided few details on the partnership struck with an unnamed new partner. The license and supply agreement (LSA) will grant the unknown company a non-exclusive license to use Oxford Biomedica’s LentiVector platform.
The companies have agreed a three-year clinical supply agreement, which will be used for the biotech’s lead CAR-T program.
Oxford Biomedica will receive an undisclosed upfront payment, as well as additional payments related to the development and manufacturing of lentiviral vectors for use in clinical trials. In addition, it will potentially receive development and regulatory milestone payments, alongside an undisclosed royalty on the net sales of products sold that use the LentiVector platform.
In comments on the deal, Stuart Paynter, CFO of Oxford Biomedica, described how the LSA had been made possible by ‘strategically re-acquiring targets’ to offer to clients.
The spokesperson explained, “Stuart’s comment is referring to the fact that we previously strategically regained the ability to licence our platform for specific targets, giving us the option to work with further partners (such as Orchard).”