Sun Pharma collaborates with ICGEB

India Infoline News Service | Mumbai | October 19, 2016 11:57 IST

The current collaboration is focused on developing a novel, safe & effective vaccine for the prevention of dengue.

Sun Pharma
International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB) and Sun Pharma announced their new collaboration for development of a dengue vaccine, targeted against all the four serotypes of Dengue virus that cause disease in humans.

ICGEB has developed a tailored recombinant virus-like-particle (VLP) based tetravalent dengue vaccine, containing host-receptor binding domain of envelope protein of all the four DENV serotypes. ICGEB has conducted pre-clinical studies over the past seven years and developed the existing Know-How and Patents for this dengue vaccine candidate.

This is the second collaboration between Sun Pharma and ICGEB focusing on dengue. The first one announced in May 2016 was related to the development of a botanical drug for treatment of Dengue. The current collaboration is focused on developing a novel, safe & effective vaccine for the prevention of dengue.

Initial findings of ICGEB’s Dengue vaccine indicate that the candidate induces serotypespecific non-cross-reactive and strongly neutralizing antibodies without disease enhancing concerns. These features of the candidate vaccine differentiate this vaccine development programme from other vaccine programs that are developed or in development globally. This vaccine development will focus on suitability for all target population whether previously affected or non-affected, including paediatric and adults and traveller population.

 Mr Kirti Ganorkar, Executive VP & Head, Global Business Development, Sun Pharma, said, “Our new collaboration with ICGEB for developing an affordable dengue vaccine is part of our broader commitment for developing new and improved vaccines and drugs against flaviviruses that are of significant health importance to India and rest of the world. Our decision to partner with ICGEB on dengue vaccine program followed extensive due diligence and expert consultations on existing dengue vaccine programs globally.”

According to Dr Salunke, Director - International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB), "Despite recent approval of a dengue vaccine and several candidates being at advance stage of clinical trials, the development of a safe, affordable and efficacious dengue vaccine still faces major challenges. I am pleased that the Dengue Vaccine Development program led by Dr. Navin Khanna at ICGEB is now proceeding to clinical development phase with Sun Pharma. The initial support from DBT and subsequent funding from Wellcome Trust has enabled ICGEB to bring this vaccine candidate at the stage it is today. We acknowledge the continued support of DBT and Wellcome Trust for these efforts at ICGEB. Our pre-clinical data is very encouraging and this could be an ideal dengue vaccine candidate for all target populations."

According to the agreement signed today, Sun Pharma will fund & support further development of the vaccine candidate and existing ICGEB Know-How and Patents. ICGEB will grant Sun Pharma exclusive rights and licenses for development and commercialisation of this vaccine globally. ICGEB will receive pre-defined royalty & milestone payments.

A joint development committee, comprising members of both the organisations, will be established to provide oversight to the dengue vaccine development program. According to the agreement signed, ICGEB shall disclose and make available to Sun Pharma all such existing ICGEB Know-How as well as effective completion of technology transfer by ICGEB to Sun Pharma within stipulated timeframe. Since, ICGEB is not related to promoter/promoter group/ group companies of Sun Pharma, this transaction does not fall under related party transaction. 

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