UK – ViiV Healthcare, a global specialist HIV that is majorly owned by GlaxoSmithKline plc have announced a global collaboration and license agreement that gives exclusive access to Halozyme’s ENHANZE drug delivery technology, recombinant human hyaluronidase PH20 enzyme (rHuPH20), for specific targets used in the treatment and prevention of HIV.
The license gives ViiV exclusive use of Halozyme’s proprietary rHuPH20 technology for four, specific HIV medicine targets that will expand opportunities for development of nearly all of ViiV’s pipeline assets.
Under the terms of the agreement, ViiV Healthcare will make an upfront payment of $40 million to Halozyme for the exclusive license to four HIV small and large molecule targets.
It is also obligated to make potential future payments of up to $175 million in development and commercial milestones per target, subject to achievement of specified development and commercial milestones, including certain specified sales milestones.
Halozyme a biopharmaceutical company will also be entitled to receive mid-single digit royalties on sales of commercialized medicines using the technology.
The PH20 enzyme breaks down a substance called hyaluronan (HA) that is found in the body’s subcutaneous space (under the skin) that acts as a barrier to the flow of fluid.
By breaking down HA locally at the injection site and temporarily removing that barrier, large amounts of fluid can be injected into the subcutaneous space and dispersed.
This facilitates the rapid delivery of large volume fluids by subcutaneous injection, potentially reducing the treatment burden of injectable drugs and providing optimized treatment options to patients.
Halozyme’s technology will provide ViiV Healthcare with more opportunities to develop ultra-long acting medicines (dosing intervals of three months or longer) with its long-acting portfolio and pipeline products.
Currently, plans are underway to initiate the first experiments with the technology by the end of 2021 for investigational, long-acting cabotegravir for prevention of HIV, which is currently administered every two months.
At the moment, Halozyme has licensed its technology to 11 pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, for potential use in oncology, autoimmune disease, rare disease and infectious disease with products currently approved in oncology and immune deficiency indications.
In addition, Halozyme currently has a Cooperative Research and Development Agreement with the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases’ Vaccine Research Center in the US.