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Worg Pharmaceuticals to Acquire Apitope International

Worg Pharmaceuticals to Acquire Apitope International


Expands immunotherapy pipeline with potential first-in-class treatments for a range of autoimmune diseases


Hangzhou, China and Diepenbeek, Belgium, September 23, 2021: Worg Pharmaceuticals (Hangzhou) Co., Ltd (“Worg”), a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company developing new treatments for allergy, and Apitope International NV (“Apitope”), a clinical stage biotech company focused on autoimmune diseases, today announce that they have entered into an asset purchase agreement (the “Agreement”) under which Worg will acquire Apitope’s proprietary platform and therapeutic pipeline. Apitope’s innovative pipeline consists of clinical, preclinical and discovery stage assets for the treatment of a range of autoimmune diseases with significant unmet medical need.


Apitope is developing potential first-in-class antigen-specific immunotherapies targeting the immunological basis of autoimmune diseases. Its novel discovery platform enables the identification and selection of highly specific epitopes which reinstate immune tolerance, known as “apitopes®”. Apitope has built a robust development pipeline of antigen-specific immunotherapies. The lead compounds include the first potential disease-modifying therapy for Graves' disease, the first innovative treatment for the disease in more than 60 years, as well as potential first-in-class antigen-specific immunotherapies for Factor VIII inhibitors and multiple sclerosis. In addition, other innovative early stage programs include projects for uveitis, myocarditis and rheumatoid arthritis.


“The assets that we will acquire fit well with Worg’s business strategy by overlapping with our current business in allergy immunotherapies. With this acquisition, we will be able to expand our immunotherapy pipeline based on the same core immunology knowledge. We are pleased to take the leading role of these innovative therapies and bring new treatment options to patients”, said Andrew Xu, Chief Executive Officer of Worg.


Rainer Henning, Chief Scientific Officer and Head of European Operations for Worg added: “We are very excited to add the Apitope platform to our portfolio. This transaction expands our immunotherapy pipeline from allergies into autoimmune diseases and we are fully committed to advance the products through clinical development. We see great potential to offer innovative treatments with the potential of providing a cure to patients suffering from a range of autoimmune diseases.”


Stéphane Verdood, Chairman and Hayley French, Chief Executive Officer of Apitope, commented: “We are very pleased to join forces with Worg which will drive the development of our promising pipeline of first-in-class immunotherapies to give patients novel, effective and safe treatments. We believe the combination of Apitope’s innovative programs and Worg’s drug development expertise will maximise the potential of these projects and address significant unmet medical needs.”

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Last Updated: 29-Sep-2021