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From Bench to Bedside: NCKU and Allgenesis team up to bring a novel multi-specific protein AG-73305 to clinical trials for treating various retinal diseases

Professor Woei-Jer Chuang, at National Cheng Kung University is thrilled to announce that a collaboration with Allgenesis Biotherapeutics Inc. has culminated in first-patient-enrollment in a Phase 2a Diabetic Macular Edema clinical trial. 

Prof. Chuang and his team had spent the past 20+ years developing a database of integrin-binding peptides and established a novel disintegrin platform for pharmaceutical use. In 2015, NCKU out-licensed the disintegrin technology to Allgenesis Biotherapeutics Inc., who was looking for drug candidates with novel MOAs to address unmet medical needs in retinal diseases, with a market size of more than USD 20 billion.

The team at Allgenesis, led by Chief Executive Officer Dr. Madhu Cherukury, who has over 30 years of experience in drug development from major global pharmas, were very familiar with the potential benefits of the anti-integrin pathways and saw the application of this platform in retinal diseases. Upon in-licensing, Allgenesis worked with Prof. Chuang and his team to further improve the potency and reduce the safety risks of the disintegrin variants. Allgenesis designed various multi-specific molecules incorporating this platform.  This leads to the discovery of AG-73305, a single molecule that simultaneously inhibits vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF)- and integrin-associated signal transduction to block inflammation, angiogenesis and fibrosis which are key to treating retinal diseases. 
In February 2022, AG-73305 cleared its US IND and began the first-in-human trial in June 2022. This partnership with Allgenesis is the first of any programs from NCKU to have reached the clinical stage using disintegrins. Separately, Allgenesis successfully out-licensed the Greater China rights (ex. Japan and Taiwan) of AG-73305 to AffaMed Therapeutics. Prof. Chuang and the NCKU Incubator are looking forward to a successful clinical trial by Allgenesis, with clinical trial readout in 4Q2022, and the continued collaboration to support future new drug discoveries.


About Allgenesis Biotherapeutics Inc.
Allgenesis is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Taipei, Taiwan. The company is focused on the research and development of novel medicines for the treatment of eye diseases. Current projects in the pipeline include AG-73305, a potential blockbuster drug for the treatment of diabetic macular edema (DME), neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nAMD), and other retinal diseases, and AG-80308 for Dry Eye Disease.


About AG-73305 
AG-73305 is a humanized multi-specific Fc-fusion protein designed to simultaneously block VEGFs and integrins for the treatment of diabetic macular edema (DME), neovascular age-related macular degeneration (nAMD), retinal vein occlusion (RVO), and other retinal diseases. AG-73305 is composed of a VEGF-trap and disintegrin domains that block various VEGF and key integrin signal transduction pathways. AG-73305 has the potential to treat both anti-VEGF responders and non-responders.


Media Contact
Yo-Chi Chang
Program Manager
Department of Life Sciences
National Science and Technology Council
TEL: +886-2-27377544
Email: yochang@nstc.gov.tw

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Last Modified : 2022/10/18