Dow Spin-Off Pfenex Inks Licensing Pact With Merck For Its Protein Technology
This article was originally published in The Pink Sheet Daily
The big drug maker will pay as much as $52 million to tap protein expression technology used to make proteins for developing a vaccine candidate.
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Merck’s 15-valent vaccine candidate was non-inferior to Pfizer’s Prevnar 13 in a Phase III study and provided superior protection against serotype 3, a frequent cause of invasive pneumococcal disease.
Merck’s V114 protected against all 15 targeted serotypes in the first two of 16 Phase III studies, but market leader Pfizer’s 20-valent Prevnar 13 successor is on track for a US FDA filing in late 2020.
With the acquisition, Merck gains a contract manufacturing organization with specific expertise in microbial-derived biologics.