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Aurigene and Orion Corporation Announce Research, Collaboration and Option Agreement for Rights to Aurigene’s Epigenetics Program for Pan BET and Selective BET Bromodomain Inhibitors

ESPOO, Finland and BANGALORE, India, June 24, 2014 /PRNewswire/ —

Orion Corporation, a globally operating Finnish pharmaceuticals company and Aurigene, a leading biotech company based in India, today announced that the two companies have entered into an Option and Research & Collaboration Agreement for rights to Aurigene’s Pan BET and Selective BET Bromodomain inhibitors program.

Link: Press Release

Under the terms of the Option Agreement, Aurigene will receive an upfront payment from Orion, followed by a licensing fee, milestones and royalties upon exercising the option at the Candidate selection stage for the BET inhibitors. Orion will collaborate with Aurigene and fund the selective BET program at Aurigene, with Aurigene being eligible for development phase milestones and royalties.

“Aurigene has focused in the Epigenetics space over the last few years, and is pleased to partner its lead programs with Orion, a company that we have had a strong and strategic partnership with, over many years. We are sure that Orion, with its deep expertise in Oncology, is the right partner to further develop these assets,” said CSN Murthy, CEO of Aurigene.

“Aurigene and Orion have worked together in a number of programs over the past several years, with some of our early collaborations expected to reach the clinical development phase soon. Aurigene’s ability to work closely with our Scientific teams, in this exciting area of cancer therapy, will add value to Orion’s pipeline,” said Dr. Pekka Kallio Head of Oncology and Critical Care Research, of Orion.

About Aurigene’s BET Bromodomain Program

Aurigene has been working in the Bromodomain space, for development of pan-BET and selective BET therapeutics, for over 2 years now. Aurigene’s BET inhibitors, developed from a novel chemotype, have demonstrated a unique binding mode leading to a differentiated pharmacological profile that may offer a superior therapeutic window. Selective BET inhibitors under development at Aurigene will be profiled extensively in oncology and other potential indications.

About Aurigene

Aurigene is a biotech focused on development of innovative small molecule and peptide therapeutics for Oncology and Inflammation; key focus areas for Aurigene are Immuno-oncology, Epigenetics and the Th17 pathway. Aurigene’s PD-1 program is the first of several peptide-based immune checkpoint programs that are at different stages of Discovery. Aurigene has partnered with several big pharma and mid-pharma companies in the US and Europe, and has delivered multiple clinical compounds through these partnerships. With over 500 scientists, Aurigene has collaborated with 6 of the top 10 pharma companies.

Aurigene’s pre-clinical pipeline includes (1) RoR gamma reverse agonists (2) NAMPT inhibitors and (3) EZH2 inhibitors (4) IRAK4 Inhibitors and (5) Several immune check point peptide inhibitor programs.

For more information: https://www.aurigene.com/

About Orion

Orion is a globally operating Finnish company developing pharmaceuticals and diagnostic tests – a builder of well-being. Orion develops, manufactures and markets human and veterinary pharmaceuticals, active pharmaceutical ingredients and diagnostic tests. The company is continuously developing new drugs and treatment methods. Pharmaceutical R&D focuses on central nervous system drugs, oncology and critical care drugs, and Easyhaler® pulmonary drugs.

Orion’s net sales in 2013 amounted to EUR 1,007 million and the Company had about 3,500 employees. Orion’s A and B shares are listed on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki.

Aurigene Contact Person:

Rajshree KT, Director, Strategic Alliances

pr@aurigene.com; Tel: +91-80-7102-5444