A few months after Jennerex and its partner Transgene reported that their oncolytic cancer vaccine Pexa-Vec flunked a Phase IIb endpoint on overall survival in liver cancer, the private South Korean CRO SillaJen has stepped in to buy the company in a deal worth up to $150 million at the high end.
A pair of prominent pharma players are partnering up with a few marquee European VCs to back an up-and-coming immunotherapy biotech based in Vienna.
Cancer vaccine developer Galena Biopharma has filed a libel suit against the co-inventor of its lead candidate.
Agenus has struck a deal to raise about $6.5 million from institutional backers in a direct offering of common stock and warrants. The financing was announced a day after the Lexington, MA-based biotech company revealed that patients with glioblastoma multiforme, a cancer which attacks the brain, who took its experimental vaccine lived more than twice as long without their cancer getting worse than those on the standard of care.
Coming into 2013 GlaxoSmithKline highlighted a cancer vaccine as one of its brightest late-phase candidates. Yet, like many cancer vaccines before it, MAGE-A3 has disappointed at the final hurdle.
Stem cell transplants have improved treatment of patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), but the risk of relapse remains. Advances are needed to extend 5-year progression-free survival rates beyond the currently achieved 64%, and Dana-Farber thinks a vaccine could help.
A DNA cancer vaccine developed by Blue Bell, PA-based Inovio Pharmaceuticals caused tumor cell death and increased the rate of survival in animal studies.
Biovest International sees a sunnier financial picture for its cancer vaccine hunt, but first that means filing for Chapter 11 and rejiggering its balance sheet.
Writing in Nature Medicine, MD Anderson Cancer Research Center assistant professor Willem Overwijk says he wanted to explore the cancer vaccine strategy to see if he could find the Achilles heel for these new drugs. He ended up with what he called an "aha!" moment when he zeroed in on the ways that investigators equipped vaccines to work.
After taking its big Phase III study of Stimuvax all the way to a conclusive finish, Merck KGaA said the closely-watched lung cancer vaccine failed to demonstrate a significant improvement in overall survival--a flop that will leave a deep scar at Oncothyreon as well, which licensed out the treatment.