Vaccitech, the start-up that owns the technology behind the AstraZeneca vaccine, has warned that concerns about rare blood clotting side effects could affect royalties and affect the reputation of products in its pipeline.
The Oxford University spin-out on Friday released its prospectus for a initial public offering of at least $ 100 million on the Nasdaq, at the end of the week in which the UK and several EU countries recommended against give the vaccine to younger people.
The filing revealed how much the startup could receive from vaccine sales. If and when AstraZeneca starts selling the vaccine for a profit after the pandemic – which according to their contract could take place as early as July 2021 – Oxford will pay around a quarter of the royalties it receives from the vaccine to Vaccitech, about 1.4 percent of total net sales.
The company received a one-time payment of $ 2.5 million when transferring the technology behind the Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine last year.
Vaccitech is developing vaccines against other infectious diseases, including the Zoster and Seas virus, another coronavirus, and uses the same vector technology in treatments for cancer and chronic hepatitis.
The pandemic has helped the company prove that its technology works in millions of people, as many biotechnologies go public with little to no data from clinical studies. The rapid development and manufacture of the AstraZeneca vaccine has also helped prove that Vaccitech’s technology can be scaled up quickly.
But while the Oxford / AstraZeneca vaccine, known as AZD1222, has been shown to be safe and effective, recent concerns about a very rare side effect now weigh on public perception of the stroke.
“There can be no assurance that the vaccine is not associated with an increased overall risk of thromboembolic events,” the company wrote on the file.
Vaccitech also warned that studies showing the AstraZeneca vaccine to be less effective against the variant first identified in South Africa could impact sales.
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“Any association of AZD1222 with adverse events, or the perception of such an association, or any finding that AZD1222 is less effective against certain variants of Covid-19, may reduce sales of AZD1222 and therefore payments. potentials that we may receive from net sales of the vaccine, and could otherwise negatively impact the development and our ability to market any of our product candidates, ”he said.
Vaccitech’s decision to list in New York is a disappointment for the UK, which hopes to attract more investment in the life sciences. The British Treasury has a stake in the company, according to people familiar with the situation.
The largest investor is Oxford Sciences Innovation, a start-up venture capital firm focused on commercializing the university’s intellectual property, with a 29% stake before the offer. Other large shareholders include insurer Prudential, with a 13 percent stake, and entities affiliated with Google Ventures, which own 6 percent.