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Open Orphan agrees deal that could generate €11.8m in revenue


Chairman of Open Orphan Cathal Friel

Chairman of Open Orphan Cathal Friel

Jason Clarke

Chairman of Open Orphan Cathal Friel

Open Orphan, a Europe-focused pharma services company specialising in rare disease and so-called orphan drugs, has agreed a contact with a European biotech company that could generate up to £10.2m (€11.8m) in revenue.

The contract is for the provision of a respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) human challenge study.

The study is projected to deliver £3.2m in revenue this year.

If it is successful, it is anticipated that an additional follow-on larger pivotal challenge study will commence at the end of 2020.

This additional study could add a minimum of £7m in further revenue.

In a statement, the company said the contract win demonstrates hVIVO, part of Open Orphan, “successfully converting its pipeline and reinforces its position in the provision of viral challenge studies, vaccine and viral laboratory services, supporting product development for customers developing antivirals, vaccines and respiratory therapeutics.”

It added that these services are “particularly relevant and topical” in the current climate, given the spread of the coronavirus.

London-based hVIVO has Europe's only commercial 24-bed quarantine clinic and on-site virology laboratory and is the only company globally with the capability to run an RSV human challenge study.

Cathal Friel, chairman of Open Orphan, said: "This agreement demonstrates one of the benefits of the merger with hVIVO and the opportunity the broadened service offering provides in delivering a catalyst for significant revenue growth and margin expansion within the business.

In the short term, the combination of Open Orphan and hVIVO is expected to result in substantial cost savings through the elimination of subcontractor costs where they can be replaced by new capabilities within the company."

Online Editors