BioAtla said today it has expanded its 2-year-old collaboration with Beijing Sinobioway Group to develop and commercialize antibody therapeutics based on BioAtla’s Conditionally Active Biologic (CAB) platform, increasing the value of the partnership.

BioAtla and Sinobioway have added five new CAB antibody targets, all undisclosed, to their collaboration and have come to terms on a new services agreement through which Sinobioway will provide development and manufacturing services to BioAtla.

Under their expanded agreement, Sinobioway agreed to pay BioAtla a total $50 million, to consist of $30 million in cash and $20 million in credits toward future manufacturing and development services to be performed at discounted rates by Sinobioway.

Of the $30 million cash payment, BioAtla is entitled to receive $5 million in this month, with the other $25 million tied to receiving the first approval of an Investigational New Drug (IND) application filed by BioAtla with the FDA to begin a Phase I clinical trial of a CAB antibody candidate.

Also under the expanded collaboration, upon either BioAtla's first IND approval or March 31, 2018—whichever comes later—Sinobioway agreed to pay BioAtla an additional $40 million cash upfront for four more antibody candidate indications.

BioAtla to date has received $40 million from Sinobioway through their collaboration, launched in March 2015, with the goal of developing and commercializing CAB antibodies for specific indications in China, Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. In December 2016, BioAlta said the companies had selected their first four CAB product programs for development.

Today BioAtla disclosed two of the four candidates, saying it is completing pre-IND development of CAB Axl-ADC to treat pancreatic cancer and CAB Ror2-ADC to treat triple-negative breast cancer. CAB proteins can be monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), enzymes, and other proteins designed with functions dependent on changes in microphysiological conditions both outside and inside cells—such as pH level, oxidation, temperature, pressure, presence of certain ions, hydrophobicity, and combinations of such conditions.

Under the collaboration agreement, Sinobioway or certain affiliated entities are obligated to fund the development, manufacturing, clinical trials, and commercialization costs in areas covered by the accord for each of the Sinobioway-selected CAB antibody candidate indications.

The new master services agreement requires Sinobioway to perform development and manufacturing services for BioAtla's own CAB product candidates as well as for CAB product candidates that BioAtla may license to partners other than Sinobioway for development and commercialization in the rest of the world. Such services, BioAtla said, may include manufacturing product for clinical trials and for commercialization.

BioAtla added that it expects that most of the CAB candidates it would seek to develop or manufacture through Sinobioway's services would also be licensed to Sinobioway under the collaboration agreement.

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