ZAI Lab, a biotech company in China, has entered into a global licensing agreement with Sanofi for two novel compounds for the potential treatment of chronic respiratory diseases including chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma and idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF). The compounds were discovered by Sanofi and currently are in preclinical stage.
ZAI Lab will be responsible for global development, manufacturing and commercialization of the two clinical ready novel programs. Sanofi will potentially receive development and regulatory approval milestones and tiered royalties from the global net sales of the licensed products. Additional terms of the agreement have not been disclosed.
Dr. Samantha Du, founder and CEO of ZAI Lab, said, "ZAI Lab's vision is to develop innovative medicines that can treat patients with serious medical conditions including chronic respiratory diseases. Chronic respiratory diseases such as COPD and asthma are becoming a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in China with no effective treatments. By working with Sanofi, ZAI Lab intends to initiate the development activities to bring effective therapies to patients globally."
In China, according to the World Health Organization, chronic respiratory diseases are the second leading cause of death. It is estimated over 50% of Chinese men smoke and the worsening pollution level also is a major contributor.