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Medgenics, Baxter extend Biopump development agreement

Medgenics, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing a proprietary platform technology, has extended its agreement with Baxter to jointly develop Factor VIII Biopump.

Biopump, a proprietary tissue-based platform technology, is used for the sustained production and delivery of therapeutic proteins using the patient’s own skin biopsy for the treatment of chronic diseases like anemia, hepatitis C and hemophilia.

Confirmatory studies will be conducted implanting Factor VIII Biopumps in mice, under the extension period.

The costs of the studies for preparation and delivery of the necessary Biopumps will be owned by Baxter.

In the extension period Baxter has an exclusive option for 6 months to negotiate with Medgenics an agreement to commercialize the Biopump Factor VIII technology until 30 September 2011.

Medgenics president and CEO Andrew Pearlman said they look forward to complete these confirmatory studies and expect that they will validate the ability of Biopump to produce clinically relevant levels of Factor VIII.

Medgenics has three long-acting protein therapy products in development based on this technology which include – EPODURE, INFRADURE and HEMODURE.

EPODURE (now completing a Phase I/II dose-ranging trial) is used to produce and deliver erythropoietin.

INFRADURE (to commence a Phase I/II trial in Israel in 2011) is to produce a sustained therapeutic dose of interferon-alpha to treat hepatitis C.

HEMODURE is a sustained Factor VIII therapy to treat hemophilia.