Home Interviews CombiGene’s CEO comments on the patent approvals in Australia and India

CombiGene’s CEO comments on the patent approvals in Australia and India

Peter Ekolind, vd CombiGene

CombiGene’s CEO comments on the patent approvals in Australia and India

20 March, 2024

CombiGene was granted patents in Australia and India for the CG01 epilepsy project, and the objection period recently passed. BioStock spoke with CEO Peter Ekolind, who believes that this strengthens the project and increases the value ahead of a potential partnership.

CombiGene’s drug candidate CG01 is being developed as a new treatment for drug-resistant focal epilepsy. In doing so, the company is targeting a patient population of approximately 47,000 new cases each year in the US, EU4, UK, Japan and China alone.

Unlike today’s treatment alternatives, which are only address the symptoms of epilepsy and require lifelong administration, CombiGene’s CG01 has the potential to cure the disease after only one or two treatment sessions.

Looking for a new partner

At the beginning of 2024, CombiGene regained the rights to the CG01 project from the American company Spark Therapeutics. The biotech is now in the analysis phase of the data generated during the last two years of collaboration, which will be compiled into a package that can be presented to potential partners who have a strategic interest in gene therapy in epilepsy.

The Danish investment company Orphazyme sees the potential in the project and recently acquired 10 per cent of the shares in CombiGene. Read more in BioStock’s interview with Orphazyme’s Chairman of the Board Michael Hove here.

The CEO comments on the approval of patents in new countries

CombiGene's CEO comments on the patent approvals in Australia and India
Peter Ekolind, CEO CombiGene

Patents are important for making a project attractive to potential partners. Until now, CombiGene has had two approved patents for CG01 – in the US and Russia. Last week, patents for CG01 were granted in two countries, Australia and India.

How important is it for CombiGene to secure patents in these countries, and does the gene therapy field differ from traditional pharmaceutical projects in terms of patents?

BioStock reached out to CEO Peter Ekolind to get his views on intellectual property rights and the two patents specifically.

Peter, how do gene therapies differ from other drugs when it comes to patent protection?

— In fact, not so much at all. In order to dare to invest in a long and costly development phase, as it is for gene therapy development, it is important to be able to be sure that the innovation can be out-licensed to a potential taker, and then strong patent protection is the means available.

What do the recently-obtained patents cover and how long does the protection last?

— These two patents belong to patent family 2 and cover the gene therapy candidate CG01. The protection extends to different countries, for Australia and India the protection lasts until the beginning of 2037.

You work within the framework of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) which covers approximately 150 countries with a single application. Are the new patents obtained through PCT?

— We first filed a PCT application for these patents, and then we chose about ten countries to send national applications to. Australia and India have now approved their national applications.

Finally, what is happening right now in CombiGene?

— The focus of our work is on analyzing the data that we still receive from Spark, which will form the basis for a new out-licensing to interested companies. The work on the COZY program is progressing at a rapid pace.

The content of BioStock’s news and analyses is independent but the work of BioStock is to a certain degree financed by life science companies. The above article concerns a company from which BioStock has received financing.

Prenumerera på BioStocks nyhetsbrev