RFS Pharma and Genoscience Pharma enter Worldwide License Agreement with BioLineRx to develop and commercialize Hepatitis C Virus Protease Inhibitor
Jerusalem, Israel, January 24, 2012 – RFS Pharma, LCC, a clinical-stage biopharmceutical company developing drugs for the treatment of HIV-1, hepatitis and emerging viruses, announced that in collaboration with Genoscience Pharma, it has entered into a worldwide license agreement with BioLineRx, a biopharmaceutical development company, to develop and commercialize BL-8030, an orally available treatment for Hpeatitis C. The agreement includes upfront royalties and milestones payable to both companies. Bl-8030 was co-developed through a joint collaboration between RFS Pharma and Genoscience Pharma.
BL-8030 is a potent and selective second generation NS3 protease inhibitor. The NS3 protease is essential for the replication of hepatis C virus (HCV) and is an important taregt for HCV therapies. BL-8030 has been shown to have excellent activity against various HCV genotypes and exhibited improved resistance profil against commun protease inhibitor mutants, resulting in a lower probability that the virus will develop resistance to treatment. In addition, BL-8030 has demonstrated a good toxicity profile, exhibiting specificity only to the viral protease and lack of activity against a relevant panel of human proteases as weel as a clean profil versus human liver enzymes, which is expcted to lead to less drug-drug interactions.
“We are very pelased with the outcome of our discovery research collaboration with Genoscience Pharma and we look forward to the partnership with BioLineRx for the continued development of our product for the treatment of HCV. This company has an impressive scientific team and expertise in drug development” said Dr Steven J. Coats, Senior Director of Chemistry at RFS Pharma.
Pr Philippe Halfon, co-founder and president of Genoscience Pharma added: “We are excited about the compounds discovered in the strategic alliance with RFS Pharma and the current partnership with BioLineRx. there is clearly a significant unmet medical need in finding safe and effective therapies for HCV infection, and based on results to date, BL-8030, in combination with other oral HCV therapies can potentially bring huge benefits to patients by enhancing the efficiency of the treatment.”
“BioLineRx is delighted to form this partnership with RFS Pharma and Genoscience Pharma, companies that have demonstrated a commitment to and expertise in the field of antiviral drug development and we are excited about entering the field of Hepatis C therapeutics, wich is a very improtant field in the pharmaceutical makert today”, noted Dr Kinneret Savistky, CEO of BioLineRx.