The latest healthcare and pharma news from Singapore, including the partnership between Boehringer Ingelheim and A*STAR for targeted cancer therapies, Amgen’s sponsorship of biotech incubator, NSG BioLabs, and Tessa Therapeutics’ USD 126 million funding round.
Boehringer Ingelheim / A*STAR partner on targeted cancer therapies (BioSpectrum Asia)
Boehringer Ingelheim and the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) in Singapore recently announced a global licensing deal under which Boehringer Ingelheim will obtain exclusive worldwide rights to research, develop, and commercialise products based on a panel of innovative, tumour-specific antibodies from A*STAR.
“Boehringer Ingelheim believes that these promising antibodies in-licensed from A*STAR will help us advance potent therapeutic candidates against key molecular cancer targets,” says Clive R. Wood, Senior Corporate Vice President and Global Head of Discovery Research at Boehringer Ingelheim.
Amgen has become the inaugural sponsor of Singapore’s largest biotech incubator, NSG BioLabs’ NSG Tomorrow Programme to support innovation among biotech startups in Southeast Asia
Within the framework of the sponsorship, Amgen will support one “Golden Ticket” award each year for three years, awarding winners with one year of free residency in NSG Biolabs’ BSL-2 laboratory and connections to Amgen’s scientific and business leaders.
“… Recognizing the growing biotech ecosystem locally, and Amgen’s high-tech biopharmaceutical manufacturing footprint located in Singapore, our sponsorship of the Golden Ticket with NSG BioLabs aims to further foster early-stage life science companies and provide unique mentoring opportunities for local scientist-entrepreneurs,’ said Philip Tagari, Vice President Therapeutic Discovery, Amgen.
MiRXES opens SGD 8 million 4.0 IVD manufacturing facility (BioSpectrum Asia)
Singapore-based biotech, MiRXES Pte Ltd, an A*STAR spinoff focused on miRNA-powered cancer early detection tests, has announced the opening of SGD 8 million facility, the first industry 4.0 (i4.0) in vitro diagnostic (IVD) manufacturing site in Southeast Asia.
“This brand new I4.0 manufacturing facility will greatly advance our IVD productization and manufacturing capabilities as MiRXES accelerates the development and commercialization of our maturing pipeline of multi cancer early detection tests, pulmonary and cardiovascular disease tests, as well as our life sciences and infectious disease portfolio,” said Dr. ZHOU Lihan, Co-founder and CEO of MiRXES.
Tessa Therapeutics raises USD 126 million for immune cell therapies (Business Times)
Singapore-headquartered Tessa Therapeutics has raised USD 126 million in a Series A funding round led by US firm Polaris Partners, in order to advance its clinical development of immune cell therapies for cancer.
Since it was founded in 2012, Tessa has focused on the field of CAR-T therapy. The company’s lead asset, TT11, targets relapsed or refractory classical Hodgkin lymphoma and has shown promising results in clinical data from the pilot stage of the ongoing Phase 2 trial.
Another key Tessa programme is TT11X, based on its proprietary platform which could make CAR-T therapy more scalable and accessible.
AstraZeneca’s Enhertu Approved in Singapore (Asia-Pacific Biotech News)
Singapore Health Science Authority (HSA) has approved the use of AstraZeneca’s Enhertu (trastuzumab deruxtecan) for the treatment of late-stage HER2-positive breast and gastric cancer after clinical trials demonstrate that it significantly improves progression-free survival rates.
Enhertu, was jointly developed by AstraZeneca and Daiichi Sankyo to reach this significant unmet need with the current treatment options offering limited benefits for patients.
“The approval of Enhertu means that we are able to bring the benefits of this medicine to Singaporean patients with previously treated, metastatic, HER-2 positive breast and gastric cancer. The breadth, depth, and durability of response provided by the treatment are already changing the practice and transforming outcomes for these groups of patients around the world,” Dr. Vikram Shetty, Medical Director, AstraZeneca Singapore said.
GE Healthcare to collaborate with Singapore’s National Cancer Centre (BioSpectrum Asia)
In the latest of a series of alliances to support integrated healthcare systems at a local level, GE Healthcare has announced its plans to collaborate with the National Cancer Centre Singapore (NCCS). The agreement, the first of its kind for GE in Asia-Pacific (APAC), will focus on how artificial intelligence (AI) driven research can be used to improve cancer care. Specifically, the collaboration will be centred on new AI-powered solutions for data analytics and clinical workflows combining GE Healthcare’s imaging and monitoring expertise with NCCS’s expertise in research and development, testing and consultation.