COLOGNE, Germany, March 10, 2015 /PRNewswire/ — IDS 2015, Hall 4.2 Booth #N049 – Vigilant Biosciences, Inc. ("Vigilant"), a leading innovator and developer of solutions that aid in the early detection and intervention of cancer, announced today that it has entered into a five-year exclusive sales and marketing distribution agreement with BL&H Co., Ltd., for sale of its OncAlert Oral Cancer Risk Assessment System in Korea. The OncAlert Oral Cancer Risk Assessment System includes a rapid, point-of-care risk assessment test (OncAlert POC Test) and a quantitative, laboratory test (OncAlert LAB Assay).
Under the terms of the agreement, BL&H Co., Ltd. will exclusively market and sell the OncAlert POC Test and OncAlert LAB Assay to the Korean dental, otorhinolaryngology (ENT) and oncology markets, pursuant to approval of the OncAlert System by the Korean Ministry of Food and Drug Safety (MFDS). The distribution deal represents more than $5 million USD in guaranteed purchase commitments, as well as milestone payments to Vigilant. The OncAlert System is expected to be available for sale in Korea by the second half of 2015 or early 2016.
Located in Seoul, South Korea, BL&H Co. is a leading distributor of pharmaceuticals and hospital-based products and services in the Korean market.
"Vigilant Biosciences is excited to enter the relationship with BL&H Co. for the sale of our OncAlert System in the Korean market," said Matthew H.J. Kim, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of Vigilant Biosciences. "As thousands continue to be diagnosed with oral cancer every year, we are committed to providing an easy-to-use, accurate and affordable way to aid in the detection of risk for the disease in its earliest stages. We are looking forward to working with BL&H Co. to make a positive impact on the lives of oral cancer patients in Korea."
"This agreement enables us to provide an important and ground-breaking test that can aid in the early detection of risk for oral cancer," said D.C. Roh, President and CEO of BL&H Co. "The test’s accuracy, simplicity and affordability make it an ideal fit for dental and medical professionals who diagnose and treat oral cancer. We are pleased to be the exclusive distributor of this test in the Korean market and have confidence that it will help improve the lives of many."
The OncAlert Oral Cancer Risk Assessment System is based on patented technology that detects specific protein markers known to indicate an elevated risk for oral cancer, even prior to the observation of visual or physical symptoms. The simple, oral rinse procedure is easy to administer and non-invasive for the patient. The test can be applied to every adult, with particular emphasis on high-risk populations (i.e, current and former tobacco users, those who consume alcohol, and people with human papillomavirus (HPV)). Both the rapid point-of-care test and the lab assay that comprise the OncAlert Oral Cancer Risk Assessment System are currently under the CE Mark registration approval process and expected for release in Q2 2015.
About Oral Cancer
According to the World Health Organization, there are over 600,000 new cases of head and neck cancer and 300,000 deaths each year worldwide. According to the South Korea Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service (HIRA), more than 24,000 patients were treated for head and neck cancers in 2013. Historically the death rate associated with this cancer is particularly high due to late-stage diagnosis and intervention. Currently, the vast majority of patients are detected through a visual exam and/or are symptomatic, at which point they are likely late stage. As a result, oral cancer often goes undetected to the point of metastasizing. Early diagnosis of oral cancer results in a cure rate of up to 90 percent.
About BL&H Co., Ltd.
BL&H is a privately owned Korean pharmaceutical company, established in 1999, with the aim of becoming a leader in the delivery of pharmaceuticals and services that fulfill unmet medical needs of the Korean market. BL&H specializes in hospital-based products in hematology, oncology, respiratory medicine and rheumatology. BL&H’s management team has extensive experience in the pharmaceutical and healthcare sector and brings specialist products to these markets.
About Vigilant Biosciences, Inc.
Vigilant Biosciences is a leading innovator and developer of solutions that aid clinicians in the early detection and intervention of cancer. Its point-of-care and lab-based products are accurate, effective and affordable, empowering healthcare practitioners to easily assess the risk of oral cancer early, and improve outcomes through earlier intervention. Vigilant Biosciences’ OncAlert Oral Cancer Risk Assessment System™ point-of-care and lab assay products are currently undergoing the CE Mark registration approval process and not yet available for sale in any market at this time. For more information, visit www.vigilantbiosciences.com.