SHANGHAI, July 26, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — I-Mab Biopharma (“I-Mab”), a company focusing on innovative biologics in immuno-oncology and immuno-inflammation, and ABL Bio Corporation (“ABL Bio”), a South Korean biotechnology company, today jointly announced that two companies had entered into a strategic partnering agreement for ABL Bio to in-license the global rights excluding Greater China to I-Mab’s bispecific antibodies (BsAb) of undisclosed target with licensing payments of approximately US$100 million in total. The two companies also agreed on a collaboration to co-develop additional BsAbs as part of the partnership.

I-Mab Biopharma and ABL Bio Announce Global Collaboration on Innovative Bispecific Antibodies
I-Mab Biopharma and ABL Bio Announce Global Collaboration on Innovative Bispecific Antibodies

Under the terms of the agreement, ABL Bio will pay US$2.5 million in upfront payment. I-Mab will also receive research & development, regulatory and sales-based milestone payments, which could result in aggregate payments of US$100 million from ABL Bio. In addition, ABL Bio will pay tiered royalties on net sales. The partnership also includes three more collaborative bi-specific antibody projects. I-Mab and ABL Bio will share the development cost as well as rights in China, South Korea and rest of the world in different configurations.

I-Mab Biopharma and ABL Bio Announce Global Collaboration on Innovative Bispecific Antibodies
I-Mab Biopharma and ABL Bio Announce Global Collaboration on Innovative Bispecific Antibodies

“This partnership with ABL Bio is a latest addition to our growing portfolio of global partnerships spanning from early stage projects to clinical assets. We are very pleased to work with ABL Bio for their cutting-edge discovery and antibody engineering platform for novel therapeutic antibodies,” said Jingwu Zang, the founder and CEO of I-Mab. “Bi-specific antibody truly represents the next wave biologics in cancer immunotherapy for its unique modality to create target synergy,” Zang added.

“We are very excited about our partnership with I-Mab to develop First-in-Class and Best-in-Class BsAbs and our collaboration will accelerate the development of innovative immunotherapy,” said Sang Hoon Lee, the founder and CEO of ABL Bio. Lee also mentioned “We look forward to a productive and successful partnership since I-Mab is a leader in the immunology field. Because of the strong synergies between both companies, we believe this collaboration will provide a great example for our industry.”

I-Mab has successfully completed a string of in-licensing deals with global pharmaceutical companies such as MorphoSys AG (FSE: MOR; Prime Standard Segment, TecDAX; OTC: MPSYY) and Genexine, Inc. (KOSDAQ: 095700) to enrich its China portfolio. This out-licensing and partnership is the second such transaction for I-Mab and marks the beginning of I-Mab’s ability to out-license or co-develop its own innovative biologics through global partnerships.

About I-Mab:

Facilitated by a merger between Third Venture Biotech and Tasgen Bio, which was followed by a Series B financing of USD 150 million in 2017, I-Mab has rapidly built a highly experienced team with world-class R&D capabilities. On June 29, 2018, I-Mab announced that it had successfully raised US$220 million in Series C financing with a group of reputable investors led by Hony Capital, representing one of the largest amount ever raised in Series C by an innovative biotech company in China.

I-Mab focuses on discovery and development of First-in-Class and Best-in-Class biologics in the areas of immuno-oncology and immuno-inflammation. The company has already initiated a Phase 2 clinical trial and is prepared to submit multiple IND applications for additional clinical trials in China and the US, including Phase 2 and Phase 3 studies.

Raven Lin, Vice President of Corporate Development

About ABL Bio:

ABL Bio is a privately held South Korean biotechnology company developing antibody therapeutics for immuno-oncology and neurodegenerative disease. ABL Bio was founded in 2016 and recently completed series C fund raising of USD 65 million in 2018 after successful series A and B financing in 2016 and 2017. ABL001, a bispecific antibody (BsAb) targeting VEGF and DLL4 is currently in Phase 1 clinical trial for oncology. In the neurodegenerative disorder space, ABL Bio is harnessing its BsAb expertise to develop next-generation BsAbs designed to maximize blood-brain barrier (BBB) penetrance and therapeutic efficacy. The most advanced molecule is ABL301, an α-synuclein -targeting BsAb that penetrates the BBB via a receptor-mediated transcytosis (RMT) and is in development for Parkinson’s disease (PD). ABL Bio is also actively developing immune-oncology therapies and has built strong R&D team to develop First-in-Class and Best-in-Class BsAbs.

Sang Hoon Lee, CEO & Founder

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