Shares of Astellas Pharma Inc (TYO:4503) Trade Higher In Tokyo on Immunomic Therapeutics Partnership

TOKYO, JAPAN – Shares of Astellas Pharma Inc (TYO:4503) were trading higher in the morning session at the Tokyo Stock Exchange on the back of news that it has partnered with Immunomic Therapeutics for the exclusive worldwide license agreement on LAMP-vax products.

Astellas Pharma Inc (TYO:4503)’s stock was up 1.73 percent to trade at 1,550.5 as of 10:02 a.m. in Tokyo. About 5.2 million shares were exchanging hands as of this posting, with the stock hitting an intraday high of 1,569.

On Friday, Immunomic Therapeutics, Inc., a company developing next generation accines based on the LAMP-vax platform, and Astellas Pharma Inc. (“Astellas”) announced they have entered into an exclusive worldwide license agreement to the
LAMP-vax products for the treatment or prevention of any and all allergic diseases in humans.

The LAMP-vax technology enhances the effectiveness of DNA vaccines. It has the ability to make DNA vaccines work, which potentially enables effective vaccinations for a wide spectrum of diseases.

In January 2015, Immunomic Therapeutics and Astellas entered into an exclusive license agreement for Japan to develop and commercialize ASP4070 (previously known as JRC2-LAMP-vax) designed to treat allergies induced by Japanese red cedar pollen; Astellas initiated a Phase 1 trial of ASP4070 in Japan this year. Irrespective of the new agreement, this initial agreement remains in effect.

Astellas has now acquired the exclusive worldwide rights to research, develop, manufacture and commercialize any potential LAMP-vax products designed to treat or prevent human allergic diseases, including, among other things, ARA-LAMP-vax for the treatment or prevention of peanut allergy as well as other research-stage programs for food or environmental allergies.

Upon execution of the new agreement, Immunomic Therapeutics will receive an upfront payment of $300 million and be entitled to receive 10% royalties of net sales of the potential products.

“We are excited that Astellas recognized the potential of LAMP-vax technology to usher in a new era in vaccination against common and serious allergies and are thrilled to be partnering with them again,” said Dr. William Hearl, CEO of Immunomic Therapeutics.

“With this new partnership, Astellas can explore the LAMP-vax platform for allergic disease, while we continue applications in other areas, like cancer immunotherapy.”

Astellas Pharma Inc. is a Japan-based company mainly engaged in the pharmaceutical business. The Company is involved in the manufacture and sale of pharmaceutical products in Japan, the United States, Europe, China, Korea and Taiwan, through its subsidiaries.

Its main products include immunosuppressive drug Prograf, overactive bladder agent Vesicare, Protopic ointment for atopic dermatitis, Harnal for prostatic and urethral smooth muscle, and antimycotic agent Funguard, among others.

It also provides pharmaceutical products for gastritis, osteoporosis, hypertension, schizophrenia, rheumatoid arthritis, atopic dermatitis and other diseases. As of March 31, 2014, the Company had 79 subsidiaries and six associated companies. –