EVT894 - Chikungunya
In January 2021, Evotec announced that EVT894, a monoclonal antibody to treat and potentially prevent chikungunya virus infections, has entered clinical development. The Phase I, randomised, double-blind, single centre, single dose escalation study to evaluate the safety, pharmacokinetics, and immunogenicity of EVT894 vs placebo in healthy volunteers (five dose-cohorts of 8 subjects) is sponsored and funded by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (“NIAID”).
EVT894 is a fully human monoclonal antibody that targets a viral protein and has shown potent neutralising activity in in vitro and in vivo models. The monoclonal antibody was initially developed by Sanofi and was among the projects out-licensed to Evotec as part of the transfer of Sanofi’s Lyon-based infectious disease R&D unit to Evotec in July 2018.
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
In June 2019, Evotec announced that the company has entered into a five-year partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to discover new treatment regimens that better address tuberculosis (“TB”), a severe global health burden and one of the leading causes of death due to infectious diseases worldwide. The current standard treatment regimen for TB consists of a minimum of 6 months of treatment with 4 drugs administered under direct observation, but treatment is much longer when TB is drug resistant.
Evotec will receive a grant of approximately $ 23.8 m for a period of up to 5 years from the foundation. The main objective of the grant is to generate standardised, high-quality pre-clinical data to support novel regimen selection and development. The regimen should be safer, shorter in duration and more efficacious than the current standard of care.
In March 2019, Evotec and The Global Antibiotic Research and Development Partnership (“GARDP”) announced the formation of a new strategic public-private partnership to tackle the growing threat of antimicrobial resistance. By joining forces, Evotec and GARDP will leverage their capabilities and networks to address drug-resistant bacterial infections. This includes bringing together GARDP’s clinical expertise and sustainable access commitment with Evotec’s leading drug discovery platform, expertise in medicinal chemistry and pharmacology, as well as its world-leading collection of bacterial pathogens. This strategic partnership focuses on accelerating the development of first-in-class antibiotic treatments for hard-to-treat bacterial infections by establishing a platform that spans the length of the drug development value chain as well as developing a joint pipeline.