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Investment

AstraZeneca partners with Transgene for its oncolytic viruses

by Ryan Cross
May 11, 2019 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 97, ISSUE 19

 

AstraZeneca is making a small bet on tumor-bursting oncolytic viruses. The drug company is paying the French biotech firm Transgene $10 million to make five engineered vaccinia viruses that are designed to infect cancer cells and spur the body’s immune system to attack tumors. AstraZeneca suggests it will test the ability of these viruses to boost the efficacy of its existing checkpoint inhibitor therapies. Transgene may earn $3 million more in preclinical milestones and an undisclosed license fee for any viruses AstraZeneca chooses to develop.

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