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Junshi, Eli Lilly Agree To Co-develop JS016 Antibodies Against COVID-19

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Junshi Biosciences, a China-based biopharmaceutical company, and Eli Lilly and Company (LLY) have entered into an agreement to co-develop therapeutic antibodies for the potential prevention and treatment of COVID-19. Junshi SARS-CoV-2 Antibodies, or JS016, is a recombinant fully human monoclonal neutralizing antibody that is specific to the SARS-CoV-2 surface spike protein receptor binding domain. It is jointly developed by Junshi Biosciences and Institute of Microbiology, Chinese Academy of Science.

The company plans to begin the IND application submission in China as soon as possible. Junshi Biosciences and Lilly aim to submit an IND application and initiate clinical studies in the U.S. in the second quarter of the year. Lilly will receive an exclusive license to conduct clinical development, manufacturing and distribution of products outside of Greater China. Junshi Biosciences will maintain all rights in Greater China.

Daniel Skovronsky, Lilly's chief scientific officer, said: "The data generated by Junshi Biosciences suggest the lead antibody may have appropriate properties to support testing its therapeutic use in patients as well as exploring its potential for preventing infection in at-risk individuals. We look forward to partnering with Junshi Biosciences to quickly begin testing this potential new therapy in clinical trials."

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