Legal & General completes £760 million buy-in with Sanofi Pension Scheme

FRANCE – The Sanofi Pension Scheme has insured the benefits of approximately 2,900 pensioners in a £760 million buy-in with Legal & General (L&G) Assurance Society. Despite being a long-term client of L&G Investment Management, this is the scheme’s first bulk annuity deal with L&G. Legal & General, founded in 1836, is one of the UK’s leading financial services groups and a major global investor, with operations in the United States, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. It is the UK’s largest investment manager for corporate pension schemes, with nearly…

Read More

EU bans carcinogenic food additive used in confectionaries

EUROPE – European Union member states have unanimously agreed to ban a widely used coloring additive for food, known as the artificial coloring E171 on labels, after finding that its carcinogenic effects cannot be ruled out. Titanium dioxide, or E171 – used to whiten and brighten products like cake icing, sweets, white sauces, medicine and cosmetics – was found to contain titanium dioxide nanoparticles. The particles have the potential to cause DNA damage, according to research conducted by the European Food and Safety Authority (EFSA). The EFSA’s conclusion, based on…

Read More

WHO sets pace in competency building with health focused academy campus in France

FRANCE – Emmanuel Macron, President of the French Republic, and Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, today broke ground for the WHO Academy’s campus in the French city of Lyon. This event marks a milestone in meeting the needs of WHO Member States and a growing global health workforce for expanded access to life-long learning, health guidance and competency-building. “The ambitions of the WHO Academy are not modest: to transform lifelong learning in health globally,” said Dr Tedros. “The COVID-19 pandemic is a powerful demonstration of the value of health…

Read More

Sanofi bolsters transplant business with acquisition of Kadmon for US$1.9 billion

FRANCE – French drug maker Sanofi is on the move to acquire Kadmon Pharmaceuticals for US$1.9 billion, reinforcing its transplant medicines business with a newly approved treatment for graft-versus-host disease. This new deal comes in hot on the heels of Sanofi’s purchase of another US biotech, Translate Bio for US$3.2 billion. Sanofi said it has offered US$9.50 per share in cash for Kadmon, representing a total equity value of approximately US$1.9 billion on a fully diluted basis, and that both companies’ boards unanimously approved the transaction. “The acquisition supports Sanofi’s…

Read More

France to donate 10 million vaccines to Africa over three months

AFRICA – France has committed to provide the African continent with 10 million doses of AstraZeneca and Pfizer vaccines over the next three months following a new partnership between France and the African Union. The vaccines will be allocated and distributed in the framework of the AU’s African Vaccine Acquisition Trust (AVAT) and the partnership for equitable vaccine rollout known as Covax, according to a statement issued by the Elysée palace. “The Covid-19 pandemic can only be overcome through intense cooperation,” Macron said in the statement, emphasising France’s “solid partnership”…

Read More

Sanofi, Regeneron burnish their blockbuster Dupixent franchise

FRANCE – As a stable of new players sets out to topple Dupixent’s status as the reigning antibody treatment for atopic dermatitis, the blockbuster’s developers are moving the goalposts. Dupixent has aced a Phase III trial involving 162 children between 6 months and 5 years old, Sanofi and Regeneron say, becoming the first biologic drug to show efficacy in this young population. When given Dupixent on top of standard of care topical corticosteroids, 28% of patients achieved clear or almost-clear skin compared to 4% of those on placebo — thus…

Read More

Sanofi acquires USA biotech company Translate Bio in US$3.2 billion deal

FRANCE – Sanofi, a French multinational pharmaceutical company, has bought off USA based biotechnology company Translate Bio in a $3.2 billion deal, as it bets on next-generation mRNA technology after setbacks in the COVID-19 vaccine race. Sanofi said it would acquire all outstanding shares of Translate Bio for US$38.00 per share in cash, representing a total equity value of about US$3.2 billion for Translate Bio. Translate Bio, set up in 2016, has not launched any drugs on the market but its clinical-stage pulmonary product using its mRNA platform is being…

Read More

Sanofi’s pompe disease therapy adopted for positive opinion by the European Medicines Agency

FRANCE – The European Medicines Agency’s (EMA) Committee for Medicinal Products for Human Use (CHMP) has adopted a positive opinion for Sanofi’s avalglucosidase alfa,a long-term enzyme replacement therapy for the treatment of people with Pompe disease. CHMP’s positive opinion and recommended indication reflect the robust data from avalglucosidase alfa’s clinical development program. The positive opinion is based on data from the Phase 3 COMET study, which found that avalglucosidase alfa showed clinically meaningful improvements in respiratory function and movement endurance measures in people with late-onset Pompe disease. Avalglucosidase alfa is…

Read More

Coave Therapeutics receives €33m (US$39m) worth of funding to help execute its corporate strategy

FRANCE – Coave Therapeutics, a clinical-stage biotechnology company, has received funding worth US$39m from eureKARE , a pioneering new company focused on financing and building next generation biotechnology companies, during a series B round. The financing was led by Seroba Life Sciences, supported by new investors Théa Open Innovation and eureKARE alongside existing shareholders Fund+, Omnes Capital, V-Bio Ventures, Kurma Partners, Idinvest, GO Capital, and Sham Innovation Santé/Turenne. Coave Therapeutics will use the proceeds from this fundraising to support the execution of its corporate strategy that involves the advancements of…

Read More

Valneva, Pfizer set to rollout phase 2 trials of its Lyme disease vaccine candidate

WORLD – Valneva, a specialty vaccine company for infectious diseases, and Pfizer, have completed their recruitment for the phase 2 trials, VLA15-221, of Lyme disease vaccine candidate, VLA15. The trial builds on previous positive Phase 2 trials and includes both adult and pediatric participants with the aim to support acceleration of the vaccine candidate’s pediatric program.  Under the recruitment program, a total of 625 participants, 5 to 65 years of age, have been randomized in the Phase 2 trial to receive VLA15 at Month 0-2-6 or Month 0-6. VLA15-221 is…

Read More