The Cross-Border Biotech Blog

Biotechnology, Health and Business in Canada, the United States and Worldwide

Tag Archives: Medicago Inc.

Monday Deal Review: September 16, 2013

 Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for September 16, 2013! The last week saw significant activity in financing. Of note is Miraculins $1,000,000 private placement, Sirona’s private placement, and Calyx’s proposal of a new private plcaement in response to the over-subscription of its previously announced offering. Finally, Stellar has raised $10 million in the initial closing of its own private placement.

In other news, Medicago is proceeding with its plan of arrangement after havign recieved court approval for the transaction.

See what else is happening in the biotech space by hitting the break!

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Monday Deal Review: August 19, 2013

Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for August 19, 2013! As August comes to a close, activity is beginning to pick up.  Bellus and Valeant have closed their acquisitions of Thallion and Bausch + Lomb, respectively.  On the financing side of things, Sophiris and Covalon are pursuing offerings, with Sophiris looking at rasing $65 million.  Finally, Transition, Vivione and Quest PharmaTech have executed deals for licensing or development.

Hit the break to see the whole story on these major deals and for the rest of the past weeks’ stories!

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Monday Deal Review: July 22, 2013

Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for July 22, 2013! A busy week saw acquisitions of Medicago by Mitsubishi Tanabe Pharma Corporation and Allon’s acquisition by Paladin Labs.

Hit the break to see the whole story on these major deals and for the rest of the past weeks’ stories!

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Monday Deal Review: July 8, 2013

Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for July 8, 2013! A busy two weeks has seen  lot of activity on the debt financing side of things. This includes Paladin and Bioniche’s complex debt financing and license arrangement.
Valeant’s ambitious financing push is also nering completion, with the public offering worth $2.3 billion closing and the nearly $3.3 billion in senior notes being priced.

Click through the break to see the full rundown of the past weeks’ stories!

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Monday Deal Review: February 11, 2013

Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for February 11, 2013! This week saw YM Biosciences obtain the required court approval necessary before their plan of arrangement acquisition by Gilead could proceed. The transaction is essentially free to proceed by the effective date of the agreement. Cangene has acquired a hemophilia compound from the remaining assets of Inspiration Biopharmaceuticals, which is undergoing bankruptcy proceedings. Cangene paid $5.9 million for the compound. Also in the news, Stem Cell Therepuetics will undergo a plan of arrangement with Trillium Therepeutics, where the two companies will effectively be merged and continue to operate under Stem Cell’s name.

Of course, there was considerably more activity this week, so click through to get the full story!

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Monday Deal Review: February 4, 2013

Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for February 4, 2013! This week saw significant activity in the sector generally  On the M&A side, Valeant continued their ongoing acquisition strategy, buying the Russian Natur Product International, a primarily OTC private pharma company. Gilead’s acquisition of YM Biosciences took one step closer to completion as YM shareholders approved the statorily mandated vote to approve the plan of arrangement that will facilitate the arrangement. Court approval is now required as one of the final steps. Microbix was also involved in the week’s M&A activity, having sold its water for injections business to Irvine Scientific. The there was also significant investment activity this week, including Biosenta announcing a new private placement.

See detail on these and the the rest of the week’s major biotech stories by clicking through!

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Monday Deal Review: January 21, 2013

Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for January 21, 2013!  Medicago made news last week with a $15 million loan agreement with an unnamed pharmaceutical company. The funds are being used for Medicago’s plant-based VLP vaccine pipeline. As the agreement provides for potential licensing options with that partner, we will be watching closely to see any further announcements.

YM Biosciences, as it continues with its plan of arrangement transaction with Gilead, has received the endorsement of two proxy firms who have recommended to shareholders that they vote in favour of the transaction. This will likely allow YM Biosciences to obtain the shareholder approval required by statute to be able to continue with the arrangement.

Paladin labs, meanwhile, has closed their acquisition of a controlling stake in Ativa Pharma of Mexicom, and has also in-licensed a new biologic from Apeiron Biologics. Also, last week we saw Theratechnologies conclude their recent issues with the NASDAQ exchange by voluntarily delisting. They remain on the TSX, however.

As always, click through to see more on these deals as well as the rest of last week’s major biotech activity.

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Monday Deal Review: December 24, 2012

Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for December 24, 2012.  While the past week was relatively slow as everyone prepared for holiday breaks, there was nonetheless a series of option grants, commercial agreements and even the closing of a major private placement and conversion of a convertible debenture.  Click onward to see more, and of course, we wish you a wonderful holiday and a happy new year!

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Monday Deal Review: December 17, 2012

Welcome to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for December 17, 2012.  This week saw the completion of a number of previously announced acquisitions, as well as the announcement of new ones. The latter group includes Gilead’s acquisition of YM Biosciences and Helix’s sale of Rivex to Pharmascience. See the details on these major transactions, as well as the past week’s other biotech news, by clicking through.

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Monday Biotech Deal Review: January 9, 2012

Happy New Year and welcome back to your Monday Biotech Deal Review for January 9, 2012, following a holiday hiatus.  Link below to our review of transactions that have occurred over the previous three weeks.  Noteworthy transactions include various acquisitions by Valeant as well as a refinancing of its existing debt facilities.   Read on to learn more.  Read more of this post

Friday Science Review: January 7, 2011

Symmetry Saves the Day

University of Toronto ♦ Published in Stem Cells, Dec. 29, 2010

One of the hallmarks of stem cells is their ability to maintain the stem cell pool indefinitely through the process of asymmetric division. When they divide they give rise to one slightly more differentiated cell and one daughter stem cell identical to the original. By carrying out cell division in this manner, stem cell populations, at least in theory, are capable of living indefinitely. David Piccin and Cindi Morshead — researchers at the Donnelly Centre for Cellular and Biomolecular Research — discovered that the Wnt (pronounced ‘wint’) signaling pathway is involved in damage response in neural stem cells found in the brain. Using a mouse model Piccin and Morshead show that when neural stem cells sense it is time to replenish the stem cell population, for example during the period following a stroke, Wnt signaling contributes to a signaling cascade that promotes symmetric division. When stem cells divide symmetrically they produce two identical daughter stem cells rather than one daughter stem cell and a differentiated progenitor, ensuring that the stem cell pool does not become depleted.

H5N1 Vaccine Derived from Tobacco Plants Shows Results in the Clinic

Medicago Inc. ♦ Published in PLoS ONE, Dec. 22, 2010

Egg-based vaccine manufacturing failed to live up to its promise of rapidly producing large quantities of live vaccine for control of viral outbreaks. During the recent H1N1 influenza pandemic only 3 million doses of live vaccine had been produced by the 5 month mark, when 60 million had been expected. Canadian biotechnology company Medicago Inc. has come up with an all together different approach that could make fast and efficient vaccine production a reality — a plant-based manufacturing technology that produces influenza vaccines using Nicotiana benthamiana. At the core of the vaccine technology is something known as a “Virus-Like Particle” (VLP). VLPs are small entities containing the hemagglutinin protein of H5N1, and are produced by infecting tobacco plants with an Agrobacterium inoculum containing an H5 expression cassette. VLPs are then harvested from the aerial portions of the plant. Although a VLP resembles a viral particle, it lacks the genetic content within, thus is replication defective and non-infectious. Another aspect differentiating Medicago’s approach is that the technology only requires the genetic sequence of the virus, not an actual sample, as is the case with technologies using inactivated virus in vaccines. In a preclinical study led by Medicago’s Dr. Louis Vezina, researchers show that a VLP vaccine could induce cross-reactive antibodies in ferrets. After challenging the animals with lethal doses of H5N1 researchers observed reduced pathology and suppressed viral loads in vaccinated animals. The paper also reports on clinical results: a phase 1 trial of the H5 VLP vaccine in healthy adults between the ages of 18 and 60 revealed that the plant-derived vaccine was tolerated well at all doses and had strong immunogenicity as detected by microneutralization assays. These results taken together hold promise for Medicago’s plant-based manufacturing technology. Another plus? The vaccine can be produced in 3 weeks of sequence release! This is no doubt why DARPA made a non-repayable contribution of $21 million to Medicago back in August to build a 90,000 square foot cGMP facility in North Carolina for VLP vaccine production.

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