Merck Spends 425 million on acquiring COVID 19 drug that ends up never being used, the question is how much is Avalon GloboCare’s “S-Layer” technology really worth

Keep your eye on is Avalon GloboCare (NASDAQ:AVCO)

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According to “ Merck ends development of Covid drug it acquired from OncoImmune”  Merck (NYSE MRK)  announced Thursday it will end the development of its experimental drug for patients hospitalized with severe Covid-19 after the Food and Drug Administration asked the company to provide additional data to support an emergency use authorization.New Jersey-based Merck acquired the drug, MK-7110, through its $425 million acquisition of privately held biopharmaceutical company OncoImmune late last year. An interim analysis of clinical trial data suggested the drug improved the chances of recovery for the sickest patients with Covid-19 and reduced the risk of death or respiratory failure. However, Merck disclosed in February that U.S. regulators had asked for more data on the drug beyond the phase three trial already conducted. At the time, the company said it no longer expected to supply the U.S. with the drug in the first half of 2021. 

Now, due to “regulatory uncertainties” and the time and resources needed to provide the additional data, Merck said it decided to discontinue the development of the drug and instead focus its efforts on advancing its other Covid-19 drug as well as accelerating production of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

“Based on the additional research that would be required – new clinical trials as well as research related to manufacturing at scale – MK-7110 would not be expected to become available until the first half of 2022,” the company said in a press release. The announcement marks another disappointment for Merck in efforts to combat the pandemic. In January, it announced it would end the development of its two Covid-19 vaccines. In early trials, both vaccines generated immune responses that were inferior to those seen in people who had recovered from Covid-19 as well as those reported for other vaccines, according to the company .While Merck is discontinuing MK-7110, the company said it will move forward with its oral antiviral drug, molnupiravir, in a phase three clinical trial testing non-hospitalized patients with Covid-19.“We continue to make progress in the clinical development of our antiviral candidate molnupiravir,” Roy Baynes, Merck’s chief medical officer, said in a release. “Data from the dose-finding portion of these studies are consistent with the mechanism of action and provide meaningful evidence for the antiviral potential of the 800 mg dose.” 

As big pharma races to save millions of lives there is a smaller less known “sleeping giant” in the CAR-T space developing advanced S-layer technology with limitless applications in the key development of an intranasal vaccine.  S-Layer  “surface layer” technology is used to develop an intranasal vaccine that attaches to the mucosal membrane CEO Dr. David Jin pointed out. “We see our vaccine candidate as a complement to any injectable vaccines in clinical trials, because it could provide first-line immune protection at the virus’s entrance site”. Adding a coat of an S-layer onto solid surfaces can greatly improve the function of a therapeutic, vaccine, or device. The S-layer allows enhanced efficiency and interaction of targeted proteins and molecules for better function.

 Avalon GloboCare is in the process of establishing a state-of-the-art research facility, the Christian Doppler Laboratory, located on the BOKU campus in Vienna, Austria, under the scientific leadership of Professor Eva-Kathrin Ehmoser, the Head of BOKU’s Institute for Synthetic Bioarchitectures and Professor Uwe Sleytr, a member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences. In connection with the new facility, Avalon and BOKU have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to jointly apply for a matching research grant from the prestigious Christian Doppler Laboratory Foundation. Avalon also has research being done in MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology), the UNRLS (University of Natural Resources and life sciences in Australia), Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City and the Lu Daopei Medical Group in China, which has the country’s top ranked hematology and bone marrow transplant program 

In the December 2020 issue of Nature’s Biopharma Dealmakers, Avalon’s President and CEO, David Jin, M.D., Ph.D., highlighted Avalon’s ongoing scientific and clinical developments including a first-in-human trial of a mucosal, intranasal vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 that is planned for early 2021. Dr. Jin also described the company’s innovative, allogeneic mesenchymal stromal cell (MSC) therapy candidate, CB-MSC-1, which possess unique anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory activities, as well as AVA-001, Avalon’s third-generation CAR T cell therapy that has shown robust activity in patients with relapsed, refractory B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia in a Phase 1 trial (Avalon feature in Biopharma Dealmakers).

“We are excited and motivated to join forces with the researchers at BOKU to drive innovation. We have already begun a collaboration on the mucosal SARS-CoV-2 vaccine and are moving quickly to establish additional joint research endeavors to bring about innovative technologies and new medicines to patients,” said Dr. Jin.

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Avalon GloboCare, is a young, $100 million market cap company that has arguably some of the brightest minds in cell-based technology who have a competitive advantage with their “S-Layer” technology in a vaccine market that is expected to grow to approximately 93.billion by 2026 according to Forbes business . This small cap biotechnology company is working towards the goal of changing the way we fight the devastating effects of diseases that relentlessly attack our immune systems by using our own bodies against us. In the first quarter of 2020, Avalon GloboCare successfully completed a phase 1 first-in-human clinical study of AVA-001 in China for the treatment of relapsed refractory B cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia (R/R B-ALL). 90% of R/R B-ALL patients achieved complete remission with one dose and within one month of treatment, and then proceeded to a curative-intent allogeneic bone marrow transplant.  With more upcoming catalysts in early 2021, it is safe to say that there is a large potential upside in AVCO’s stock is currently trading at its 52 week know at 1.00 in change , as the market is anticipating updates on their progress on multiple clinical trials, leaving the question most investors are asking themselves.” When will Avalon GloboCare (NASDAQ:AVCO) take off ?” 

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