Updated on 2 May 2012
Mr James Chang, president & CEO, TaiMed Biologics
Publicly-held biotech company TaiMed Biologics was set up in 2007 with the mission to discover, develop and deliver innovative medicines that help patients prevail over serious infectious diseases, by acquiring the patent of TMB 355 drug from Genentech.
TMB-355 (Ibalizumab), a humanized monoclonal antibody (mAb) and a member of an emerging class of HIV therapies known as viral-entry inhibitors, has passed through the hands of three companies (Biogen, Tanox and Genentech) before being bought by TaiMed Biologics. This drug candidate is distinct from other entry inhibitors as it binds to the CD4 molecule, the primary receptor for HIV infection, thereby interfering with the penetration of the virus into the cell. It is the first entry-blocking humanized mAb to treat HIV/AIDS.
TaiMed Biologics has won the BioSpectrum Asia Pacific Bioscience Industry Emerging Company of the Year Award for 2012.
TMB-355 caught the attention of the scientific community in February 2003, when results from the phase I single-dose clinical trial showed a transient but clinically significant reduction in the patients' viral load. Moreover, it was well tolerated with no evidence of adverse effects on CD4 T-cells of treated subjects unlike the majority of approved drugs for HIV.
TaiMed Biologics has made much progress in its short existence, under the guidence of its scientific founder and chief scientific officer Dr David Da-i Ho, an AIDS researcher. "It is because of the outstanding management team with industry experience in both Taiwan and the US that TaiMed could complete the TMB 355 phase IIa and IIb studies for treating patients with AIDS. In addition, in collaboration with the Aaron Diamond AIDS Research Center, the development of Ibalizumab for prevention of HIV infection was explored in a phase I trial in the second half of 2010. This project has received grant funding from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation," says Dr James Chang, president and CEO, TaiMed Biologics.