BioLineRX, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on oncology and immunology, today announced that it has entered into an agreement with Biokine Therapeutics to increase BioLineRx’s stake in its lead oncology platform, BL-8040, a CXCR4 antagonist currently in late stage clinical development in both solid tumor and hematological indications, including stem cell mobilization (SCM), acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and immunotherapy for multiple types of solid tumors. As a result of the transaction, BioLineRx will increase its economic stake in the program to 80% from the previous level of 60%. BioLineRx licensed the exclusive worldwide rights to BL-8040 from Biokine Therapeutics in 2012.
“We are very pleased to execute this transaction with Biokine Therapeutics, which provides us with a significantly greater share of the economics in our lead program, BL-8040, as we continue to advance this promising candidate through late-stage clinical development,” stated Philip Serlin, Chief Executive Officer of BioLineRx. “In multiple clinical studies to date in a number of indications, BL-8040’s unique mechanism of action has demonstrated robust mobilization of target cells, a direct apoptotic effect, as well as the ability to induce infiltration of T cells into the core and periphery of solid tumors, while maintaining a favorable safety profile. Looking forward, we are approaching multiple important milestones over the next 6-9 months, most notably topline results from our ongoing Phase 2a pancreatic cancer study in combination with KEYTRUDA under our collaboration with Merck, which we expect later this quarter. As we work to bring novel cancer treatments to patients in need, we believe this transaction reflects our strong commitment to this program and better positions us to create significant long-term value for our shareholders.”
Under the terms of the agreement, upon closing of the transaction, BioLineRx will pay Biokine Therapeutics an upfront payment of $10 million in cash plus $5 million in restricted BioLineRx shares. Biokine is also eligible to receive up to a total of $5 million in future milestone payments. The $10 million upfront payment is being financed in full via the receipt of $10 million in debt financing from Kreos Capital. See the Company’s Form 6-K filed this morning for additional details about the transaction. The transaction is expected to close within the next 10 days.