SHANGHAI, China and GAITHERSBURG, MD – JUNE 15, 2022 – I-Mab (the “Company”) (Nasdaq: IMAB), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company committed to the discovery, development, and commercialization of novel biologics, today announced two assets the Company has licensed from partner MorphoSys AG (FSE: MOR; NASDAQ: MOR), felzartamab (also known as TJ202/MOR202) and TJ210 (also known as MOR210), are advancing globally through new license agreements.
MorphoSys and Human Immunology Biosciences, Inc. (HIBio), a biotechnology company focused on developing precision medicines for autoimmune and inflammatory diseases, backed by ARCH Venture Partners and Monograph Capital, announced that the companies have entered into an equity participation agreement and license agreements to allow HIBio to develop and commercialize MorphoSys’ felzartamab, an CD38 antibody, and TJ210, an C5aR1 antibody, outside of Greater China. Currently I-Mab is developing and commercializing felzartamab in Greater China and TJ210 in Greater China and South Korea.
Under the terms of the new agreements, HIBio will obtain exclusive rights to develop and commercialize felzartamab and TJ210 across all indications worldwide, excluding Greater China for felzartamab and Greater China and South Korea for TJ210.
“We have made significant progress in the development of felzartamab towards registration in China and we have brought TJ210 to the clinic in the United States. We are excited and look forward to working together with MorphoSys and HIBio to advance clinical development and commercialization of felzartamab and TJ210,” said Dr. Andrew Zhu, President of I-Mab. “This brings us one step further in providing these innovative investigational medicines to China and other countries as soon as possible to benefit more patients.”
Based on a licensing agreement between MorphoSys and I-Mab signed in November 2017, I-Mab owns the exclusive rights for development and commercialization of felzartamab in Greater China. MorphoSys and I-Mab entered into an exclusive strategic collaboration and licensing agreement to develop and commercialize TJ210 in November 2018. Under the terms of agreement, I-Mab obtained exclusive rights to develop and commercialize TJ210 in Greater China and South Korea, and share certain economics upon certain clinical milestones in the U.S. With the productive partnership with MorphoSys, I-Mab has completed felzartamab registrational trial for third-line multiple myeloma (MM) and advanced the Phase 3 trial for second-line MM in China. I-Mab is currently conducting Phase 1 clinical trial in U.S. for TJ210 in oncology indications.
Felzartamab (TJ202/MOR202) is an investigational human monoclonal antibody derived from MorphoSys’ HuCAL® antibody technology. The antibody is directed against CD38 on the surface of multiple myeloma cells, which has been characterized as one of the most strongly and uniformly expressed antigens on the surface of malignant plasma cells. According to its suggested mode of action, the antibody recruits cells of the body’s immune system to kill the tumor through antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) and antibody-dependent cellular phagocytosis (ADCP). The antibody does not involve complement dependent cytotoxicity, or CDC, an additional immune mechanism involved in tumor cell killing. Scientific research suggests that an anti-CD38 antibody may have therapeutic potential also in other cancers as well as autoimmune diseases. Based on a licensing agreement between MorphoSys and I-Mab signed in November 2017, I-Mab owns the exclusive rights for development and commercialization of TJ202/MOR202 in mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macao.
HuCAL® is a registered trademark of MorphoSys AG.
TJ210/MOR210 is a novel human antibody directed against C5aR1 derived from MorphoSys’s HuCAL Platinum® technology. C5aR1, the receptor of the complement factor C5a, is investigated as a potential new drug target in the field of immuno-oncology and autoimmune diseases. Tumors have been shown to produce high amounts of C5a, which, by recruiting and activating myeloid-derived suppressor cells (MDSCs), M2 macrophages and neutrophils, is assumed to contribute to an immune-suppressive pro-tumorigenic microenvironment. TJ210/MOR210 is intended to block the interaction between C5a and its receptor, thereby potentially neutralizing the immune suppressive function of C5a and enabling immune cells to attack the tumor.
HuCAL Platinum® is a registered trademark of MorphoSys AG.
I-Mab (Nasdaq: IMAB) is an innovation-driven global biopharma company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of novel and highly differentiated biologics for immuno-oncology diseases. The Company’s mission is to bring transformational medicines to patients around the world through innovation. I-Mab’s globally competitive pipeline of more than 20 clinical and preclinical-stage drug candidates is driven by its internal discovery and global partnerships for in-licensing, based on the Company’s Fast-to-Proof-of-Concept and Fast-to-Market development strategies. The Company is progressing from a clinical-stage biotech company into an innovative global specialty biopharmaceutical company with cutting-edge R&D capabilities, a world-class GMP manufacturing facility, and commercial capability. I-Mab has established its global footprint in Shanghai (headquarters), Beijing, Hangzhou, Guangzhou, Lishui and Hong Kong in China, and Maryland and San Diego in the United States. For more information, please visit https://www.i-mabbiopharma.com and follow I-Mab on LinkedIn, Twitter, and WeChat.
I-Mab Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements. These statements are made under the “safe harbor” provisions of the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as “will,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “future,” “intends,” “plans,” “believes,” “estimates,” “confident” and similar statements. Among other things, the business outlook and quotations in this press release, as well as the statements regarding data from the felzartamab (TJ202/MOR202) and TJ210/MOR210 clinical trials, the potential implications of clinical data for patients, and I-Mab’s advancement of, and anticipated clinical development, regulatory milestones and commercialization of felzartamab (TJ202/MOR202) and TJ210/MOR210, contain forward-looking statements. I-Mab may also make written or oral forward-looking statements in its periodic reports to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), in its annual report to shareholders, in press releases and other written materials and in oral statements made by its officers, directors or employees to third parties. Statements that are not historical facts, including statements about I-Mab’s beliefs and expectations, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements involve inherent risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including but not limited to I-Mab’s ability to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of its drug candidates; the clinical results for its drug candidates, which may not support further development or NDA/BLA approval; the content and timing of decisions made by the relevant regulatory authorities regarding regulatory approval of I-Mab’s drug candidates; I-Mab’s ability to achieve commercial success for its drug candidates, if approved; I-Mab’s ability to obtain and maintain protection of intellectual property for its technology and drugs; I-Mab’s reliance on third parties to conduct drug development, manufacturing and other services; I-Mab’s limited operating history and I-Mab’s ability to obtain additional funding for operations and to complete the development and commercialization of its drug candidates; and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Company’s clinical development, commercial and other operations, as well as those risks more fully discussed in the “Risk Factors” section in I-Mab’s most recent annual report on Form 20-F, as well as discussions of potential risks, uncertainties, and other important factors in I-Mab’s subsequent filings with the SEC. All forward-looking statements are based on information currently available to I-Mab, and I-Mab undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as may be required by law.