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Ropes & Gray Advises Innovent Biologics on a Collaboration with MD Anderson Cancer Center

Practices: Life Sciences, China Life Sciences, Asia Pacific, Intellectual Property Transactions, Strategic Licensing Programs, Strategic Commercial Agreements, International IP/Tech Transactions

Ropes & Gray advised Innovent Biologics, Inc., a leading biopharmaceutical company in China, on a strategic collaboration agreement with the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center to co-develop TYVYT (sintilimab injection), Innovent's anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody, in rare cancers in the U. S. The deal was announced on May 18.

The joint development will focus on advancing Innovent’s sintilimab injection as an effective immune checkpoint inhibitor for patients with rare cancer types. These studies will provide opportunities for Innovent to pursue approval of sintilimab by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for multiple rare cancer indications in addition to larger cancer indications for sintilimab that Innovent is independently pursuing for approval.

Under the agreement, Innovent and MD Anderson will co-fund the development activities for sintilimab, which may include multiple clinical research studies to be conducted by MD Anderson. MD Anderson plans to develop an approach, upon commercialization in rare diseases, to allow royalty payments it receives on sales of the product in the U.S. to be used to fund care for uninsured patients.  

The Ropes & Gray team included IP transactions counsel David Chen and partner Geoffrey Lin (both of Shanghai), health care partner Tom Bulleit (Washington, D.C.), IP transactions international associate Jean Qiu and IP transactions legal consultant Shelley Wang (both of Shanghai).

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