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Novel Drug Being Developed for HIV Prevention and Cancer Indications Demonstrates Best-in-Class Potency

OTTAWA, Ontario, July 23, 2019 ( - ​​Orion Biotechnology Canada Ltd. today announced that In vitro potency assessment of their lead compound, OB-002, has demonstrated that the chemokine analogue is more potent than other CCR5 antagonists in development for HIV prevention and cancer indications. Inhibitory potency of OB-002 was compared with maraviroc (Selzentry® or Celsentri®), a small molecule CCR5 antagonist, and PRO-140 (Leronlimab) a humanized antibody CCR5 antagonist. The drugs were compared in (i) an aequorin-based functional inhibition assay provided by Euroscreen Fast ( and (ii) an HIV replication assay provided by ImQuest ( using CCR5-tropic HIV BaL strain with PBMC from 18 different healthy donors. In the functional inhibition assay, OB-002 potency (0.2 nM) was 13-fold higher than that of Maraviroc (2.6 nM) and 28-fold higher than that of PRO-140/Leronlimab (5.6 nM). In the in vitro HIV replication assay, OB-002 showed potency consistently higher (8-80-fold) than that of maraviroc.

“These preclinical in vitro data clearly demonstrate the potency of OB-002 and we hope that this best-in-class profile will translate into clinical efficacy in both HIV prevention and cancer indications,” said Dr. Ian McGowan, Chief Medical Officer for Orion Biotechnology. “These data may explain the excellent efficacy we have seen in a non-human primate vaginal SHIV challenge model as well as encouraging preclinical efficacy data in multiple murine colorectal cancer studies”.

Mark Groper, President and CEO of Orion Biotechnology added; “Orion Biotechnology is delighted that our lead compound has demonstrated such impressive in vitro potency and we look forward to moving this exciting product into clinical HIV prevention studies later this year and oncology studies in 2020”.

About Orion Biotechnology Canada, Ltd.

Orion Biotechnology Canada Ltd. is a privately held pharmaceutical company leveraging advanced receptor pharmacology to develop novel therapies for serious chronic illnesses and life-threatening diseases. Since 2017, Orion Biotechnology has been developing a robust pipeline of first-in-class chemokine analogue drug candidates, including our lead candidate, OB-002 – a CCR5 receptor antagonist. Our close ties to diverse institutions and experts around the globe, as well as our proprietary drug discovery platform, continue to stimulate the rapid discovery of promising new treatments. Learn more at

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Last Updated: 24-Jul-2019