Genexine, Y Biologics to co-develop Covid-19 treatment

Lee Han-soo  Published 2020.07.21  15:52  Updated 2020.07.21 15:52


Genexine said that it would develop an antibody-based Covid-19 treatment, jointly with Y Biologics, a local biopharmaceutical company.

Genexine CEO Sung Young-Chul (left) and Y Biologics CEO Park Young-woo signed a cooperative agreement at Genexine headquarters in Seongnam, Gyeonggi Province, on Monday.

Under the accord, Genexine plans to apply its expertise in new drug development to Y Biologics' Covid-19 virus-neutralizing antibody, which the company discovered through the blood samples of people confirmed to have the Covid-19 virus and its human antibody library technology.

The drug candidate has confirmed its antiviral neutralization ability through a potency test, and the two companies are planning to start on non-clinical and clinical trials.

Both companies will jointly pay the development costs required to develop antibody therapy, and Genexine plans to lead the commercialization of the developed product or the technology through its existing global network.

The two companies will also jointly own all rights, including intellectual property and commercialization rights.

"According to a recent study, the severity of T-cell reduction among patients infected with Covid-19 can have a more dire effect on the patient's condition, and, in severe cases, can lead to death," Genexine CEO Sung Young-chul said. "The company expects to effectively combat Covid-19 by administering both GX-I7, which enhances patients' immune function by raising T cell levels, and the Y Biologics drug candidate."

Y Biologics CEO Park Young-woo said, "By using the company's Ymax-ABL human antibody library and antibody discovery source technology, we have already secured 15 kinds of Covid-19 neutralizing antibodies with some antibodies showing excellent neutralizing ability even at very low concentrations of picomolar (pM) levels in a titer test."

If the two companies' know-how is combined through joint development, a treatment will come to the market more quickly, Park added.

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