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10 May, 2017 - 10:22 By Kate Sweeney

Avacta wins patent for powerful Chinese market

Avacta laboratory

Cambridge biotherapeutics business Avacta Group has won a key patent approval in China to further strengthen its position in Asia.

The quoted UK company has earned backing for its principal patent protecting the Affimer technology. 

It is a giant stride towards addressing the potentially large Chinese diagnostics and therapeutics markets; China now accounts for more than one fifth of the global therapeutic antibody market alone.

Counterparts to this patent have already been granted in Japan, the US and Europe.

The Affimer technology is based on a small protein that has been engineered to present a ‘sticky’ surface that can be made to bind strongly and specifically to a target of interest such as another protein or virus. The way in which the Affimer has been engineered to give it the ability to bind a target is the core invention covered by Avacta’s intellectual property.

The company is commercialising the Affimer technology through a licensing model to developers of diagnostic and research products and building a pipeline of Affimer drugs both in-house and with partners.

Protection of the company’s intellectual property in China is an important step in creating commercial partnering opportunities to address the Chinese diagnostic and biopharmaceutical markets.

CEO Dr Alastair Smith said: “The grant of a robust patent to cover the core Affimer intellectual property in China adds further strength to our global intellectual property position.
“We continue to develop the core technology and I look forward to updating the market regarding further expansion of our Affimer intellectual property estate in due course.” 

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