Otovia Therapeutics

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Otovia Won the "Most Popular Award" in Boehringer Ingelheim Innovation Prize 2023

Recently, the final of Boehringer Ingelheim Innovation Prize 2023, sponsored by Boehringer Ingelheim, a leading R&D-driven biopharmaceutical company in the world, came to a successful conclusion in Shanghai, China. In the final, Dr. Shanzhong Zhang (Executive President of Otovia) made a great speech titled "AAV-Mediated Gene Therapy in Hereditary Hearing Loss", sharing the R&D layout of Otovia in the field of gene therapy for deafness and the latest progress in the investigator-initiated clinical trial (IIT) on OTOV-101 Injection. Otovia won the "Most Popular Award" since the content of the speech was appraised by the judges and the live audience.

Otovia has obtained exciting clinical data on the safety and efficacy of OTOV-101 Injection, its first gene therapy product, in less than two years from early R&D promotion to IIT kick-off. This is attributed to the sufficient technical reserves of the R&D team as well as the rich operational experience of the management team of Otovia.

Group photo of guests and prize-winners in Boehringer Ingelheim Innovation Prize 2023(The second from the right is Dr. Shanzhong Zhang)

Boehringer Ingelheim Innovation Prize, initiated in Shanghai, China in 2020, is the first biomedical innovation competition hosted by multinational pharmaceutical companies in China. Unlike other competitions stressing R&D maturity and profitability, the Boehringer Ingelheim Innovation Prize attaches more importance to project novelty and early technological innovation, reflecting its emphasis on original innovation and encouragement to early projects. Such an innovation competition has become a vital platform for local biomedical innovation companies to share their innovative ideas.

It is reported that besides the innovative R&D fund offered by Boehringer Ingelheim, the prize winners will obtain one-to-one all-round enterprise counseling and commercialization support from the External Innovation Hub China, Boehringer Ingelheim, including innovative concept validation, market positioning, competition analysis, patent strategy, innovative business cooperation, and expert consulting services, to help them solve the "growth pains" encountered in their development, thereby effectively contributing to the growth of newly established teams.

On OTOV-101 Injection

OTOV-101 Injection (OTOV101N+OTOV101C Injection) is the first gene therapy product for OTOF mutation-related deafness developed by Otovia, which is transformed from the research results of Renjie Chai, Chief Scientist of Otovia and Chief Professor of Southeast University. In the "Clinical Study for Evaluation of the Safety, Tolerance, and Efficacy of OTOV101N+OTOV101C Injection in the Treatment of OTOF Mutation-related Deafness" (IIT, clinical trial registration No.: NCT05901480) supported by Suzhou Otovia Therapeutics Co., Ltd. and initiated by Shandong Second Provincial General Hospital, administration has been completed in 3 subjects. No obvious adverse reactions were observed in the subjects. In addition, the subjects displayed significantly recovered hearing 2 weeks after administration, which recovered to the level near the hearing threshold of normal people 1 month after administration.

OTOF mutation-related deafness

DFNB9 deafness (OTOF mutation-related deafness) is a common type of congenital deafness. Patients with DFNB9 deafness usually suffer from severe sensorineural deafness, which is ascribed to the fact that the mutated OTOF gene fails to encode and synthesize normal OTOF protein. Deafness is detected in 1-3 out of every 1,000 newborns, and 65% of deafness is hereditary deafness. Pitifully, drugs capable of treating hereditary deafness have not been developed yet.