The Hong Kong-based company, known as Chi-Med is currently preparing to submit a new drug application for fruquintinib to the China Food and Drug Administration. Chi-Med’s shares traded 6 percent higher in London at 8:15 a.m. local time.
Chi-Med’s results show how Chinese biotechnology companies are moving forward with their plans to develop innovative drugs that can sell at higher prices than generic copycats. While billions have been poured into China’s biotechnology sector in the past decade, few world-class treatments have been approved so far from its companies. The data Friday puts Chi-Med on track towards commercializing the drug in the Asian country and in global markets, while giving investors a clearer path for return on their investment.
Chi-Med acquired treatments to distribute in China, even as it developed and invented its own drugs. In the past few years it has struck partnerships with several multi-national corporations, including with AstraZeneca Plc.and Nestle SA.
The company also plans to seek U.S. approval, and has plans to start development there later this year.
Fruquintinib can be used in combination with chemotherapy and other targeted treatments like immunotherapy. A treatment for solid tumors, it works by shutting off capillary growth between additional blood veins and the tumor.
Chi-Med, which has seven other drug candidates in clinical trials around the world, wants to address more types of cancers.
The company aims to present the full dataset for fruquintinib at the American Society of Clinical Oncology in June.