Combined entity creates strong foundation for leading Canadian immuno-oncology company
TORONTO, Jan. 28, 2016 /CNW/ - FACIT has announced that Trillium Therapeutics Inc. (NASDAQ:TRIL,TSX:TR; "Trillium") has acquired all of the outstanding shares of privately-held Fluorinov Pharma Inc. ("Fluorinov" or the "Company"), a FACIT portfolio company. The transaction combines Fluorinov's pipeline of oncology therapeutics and risk-reduced drug discovery engine, with Trillium's pool of innovative immuno-oncology therapies. The resulting impressive arsenal of clinical and near-clinical stage products is positioned to benefit greatly from the capital and development resources available to Trillium. The acquisition also reflects the strength of innovation within the province, as well as the current momentum behind biotechnology and product development expertise in Ontario.
Fluorinov's innovative fluorine chemical synthesis developed by Dr. Malik Slassi, Fluorinov's founder and President, has created a portfolio of new chemical entities from validated drugs and drug candidates with improved pharmacological properties. The Company's oncology drugs have been developed through a broad collaborative network including the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research (OICR) and the U.S. National Cancer Institute. FACIT's early investment in Fluorinov exemplifies the partnership with entrepreneurs in Ontario and the innovative network that extends well beyond universities and teaching hospitals.
Trillium is an immuno-oncology company developing innovative therapies for the treatment of cancer. Its lead program is a SIRPaFc antibody-like fusion protein that blocks the activity of CD47, a molecule that is overexpressed on a wide variety of tumors. CD47 binds to SIRPa on macrophages and delivers a "do not eat" signal that inhibits the ability of macrophages to phagocytose (engulf and destroy) malignant cells.
"FACIT is pleased to have been able to support Fluorinov and help drive forward its one-of-a kind technology platform and compelling clinical candidates," said Jeff Courtney, FACIT's Chief Commercial Officer. "We congratulate Dr. Slassi and his team at Fluorinov on this important milestone and look forward to the continued development of these breakthrough products with their new partners at Trillium."
"Fluorinov is deeply appreciative of FACIT's support in helping to develop the Company's programs and therapies to a stage where well-respected leaders at Trillium have taken notice," remarked Dr. Slassi. "We are excited about this new chapter with our colleagues at Trillium and are confident that the shared vision and an aggressive growth strategy will unlock the full value in the combined and strengthened pipeline of innovative therapies."
FACIT is an independent business trust established by the Ontario Institute for Cancer Research to undertake development and commercialization activities related to cancer research, products and drug discovery. For more information, please visit the website at facit.ca or email [email protected].
SOURCE Fight Against Cancer Innovation Trust
For further information: FACIT, Jeff Courtney, Chief Commercial Officer, [email protected]