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Week in Review: Hainan Haiyao Buys SinoMab Stake for $10 Million

publication date: Feb 2, 2013
 | 
author/source: Richard Daverman, PhD
Deals and Financings

Hainan Haiyao Co. (SHE: 000566) will pay $9.9 million for a 40% stake in SinoMab Bioscience Limited, a company that is headquartered in Hong Kong with offices and manufacturing facilities in Shenzhen (see story). When the purchase is completed, Haiyao will be SinoMab’s largest shareholder. SinoMab was founded in 2001 and is seeking to discover therapeutic antibodies that treat life-threatening and debilitating diseases.

MicroConstants China, a Beijing CRO that offers preclinical pharmacokinetic studies, early-stage clinical trials, and regulated bioanalysis, signed a strategic collaboration agreement to manage the clinical research center of the No. 307 Hospital of the People’s Liberation Army (see story). The parent of MicroConstants China is headquartered in San Diego.

Lee's Pharmaceutical (HK: 0950) of Hong Kong assumed responsibility for expanding into China a Phase III trial of a cardiovascular drug (see story). In exchange, Lee’s will have an option to negotiate China rights for the drug. The drug, an anticoagulant called betrixaban, was developed by Portola Pharmaceuticals of San Francisco. Lee's will make upfront and continuing payments to Portola, which will support the China arm of the Phase III trial. Once the trial is concluded, Lee's will have an exclusive period – the duration was not specified – to negotiate China rights for betrixaban.

Government and Regulatory

In early January, the State Council of China issued a Bio-industry Development Plan, which covers seven major bio-industries, one of which is biopharma (see story). A major goal of the plan is to transform the entire bio-industry into a pillar industry of China’s national economy by 2020. Over the shorter term, from 2013 to 2015, the goal is to maintain an average growth rate for bio-industry of better-than-20% annual increases.

Company News

Luqa Pharmaceuticals has launched its initial product in China, Strataderm® Gel, an innovative silicone gel scar treatment that has been approved by the SFDA (see story). Strataderm is a rapidly drying topical formulation that helps prevent excessive scarring following surgery. Founded in 2010, Luqa is a private company, backed by healthcare focused European private investors. It is headquartered in Hong Kong with an office in Shanghai and a focus on the China market.

Trials and Approvals

Aoxing Pharma (NYSE MKT: AXN), a China company with a narcotic drugs focus, received an SFDA license to produce the API in pholcodine, an opioid cough suppressant (see story). Aoxing’s China facilities are located in Shijiazhuang City, outside of Beijing. The company still needs to pass a GMP inspection before it is allowed to market the product. Aoxing owns one of just thirteen narcotics licenses in China. Nevertheless, the company’s revenues for the most recent 12 months were only $9 million, while its loss totaled $15 million.

Disclosure: none.


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