China Dominating NK Cell Therapy Clinical Development

Release Date: 27-Apr-2023

Undoubtedly, over the past decade, China has emerged as a rising star in the field of pharmaceutical research and development. Embracing a robust and rich pipeline of novel drug candidates and vigorous clinical activities, the country has been able to set its foot in the growing market of cancer immunotherapy. Owing to the regulatory reforms in the county, China has been able to progress its cancer treatment portfolio.


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China has been able to move up its pharmaceutical sector and has achieved the position of the second largest pharma industry in the world after US. Implementing and adopting the innovations in cancer immunotherapy, the country is now emerging destination for research and development of NK cell therapies. The curiosity in Natural killer (NK) cell therapies have piqued the interest of several pharma and biotech firms in China, resulting in wide research and development activities being executed leading to the Chinese biotech firms gaining an edge in the NK cell therapeutics market.


Either promoting in-house developed technologies or transforming foreign NK cell therapies, China has gained a momentum. Recently, a Chinese drug developer has showed interest to advance the US based HebeCell’s off-the-shelf CAR-NK cell therapy. The Beijing based biotech; Jacobio Pharmaceuticals has raised US$174 Million in an IPO to work with HebeCell to develop CAR-NK therapies in the treatment of cancer, viral infection and autoimmune disorders.


Supported by its regulatory body, the National Medical Products Administration (NMPA), China has been able to open its market reach and with pre-revenues companies combining to create a favorable environment, a new wave of Chinese biotech and pharma startups is visible. Offering multiple opportunities for both multinational and local companies, thanking to the decade of sustained government support, China has been able to compete in the market of ancer immunotherapy.


Cytovia Therapeutics, a US based biopharmaceutical company developing allogeneic off-the-shelf gene edited iNK and CAR and NK cell engager multifunctional antibodies has joined venture with a newly formed China focused CytoLynx Therapeutics, closing investments after raisng US$45 Million from institutional investors to finance the Investigational New Drug enabling and initial clinical development of their pipeline.


This collaboration between Cytovia and CytoLynx will advance multiple NK cell therapeutics through product development in Greater China. Moreover, the former company also obtained a technology license from the latter based on the core technologies to allow in-China development of additional NK therapeutics for global commercialization. Under this agreement, Cytovia is eligible to receive up to US$400 Million upfront development and commercial milestones.


The acceleration of innovation and development in cancer therapeutics in China has been a critical factor in managing the progressing cancer burden in the country. Furthermore, these recent advancements have been able to fuel the growing progression of Chinese oncology innovations. Focused on enhancing and promoting both international players and the local players, the region of pharmaceuticals in china has been emerging with opportunities.


Moreover, China has been the leader in developing and owing NK cell based proprietary technologies which has further made the country a natural hotspot for this emerging market of NK cell therapeutics. Additional, the country is also in leading competition with the US in terms of developing novel NK cell based therapies and it is only a matter of time that China faces the US head-on in the pharmaceutical sector.


This report aims to provide the emerging market value of the Chinese pharmaceutical industry and the growing potential it has for developing NK cell immunotherapy. Some of the significant stakeholders operating in China’s booming NK cell therapy market include; Biohaven Pharmaceuticals, XNK Therapeutics, Ivy life sciences, CHA Biotech, Cytovac and several others. Our report sheds information on the emerging potential of China and if it will surpass the US pharmaceutical industry and ultimately dominate the NK cell therapeutics market.

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