• Atomo and Volpara announced $1m+ contracts
  • Estia Health invites Bain Capital to improve on its $3 takeover offer
  • Imugene has dosed first patients in Phase 1 study


Atomo Diagnostics (ASX:AT1) announced a ‘take-or-pay’ agreement with long term partner Viatris for its HIV Self-Test for the South African private market.

Under the agreement, Viatris has committed to purchasing a minimum quantity of tests each year over a five-year period, with a total value to Atomo of $1.9m.

Atomo says the deal is material from a growth perspective, and is separate and additional to the existing agreement with Viatris.

Following the deal, Atomo has terminated its distribution agreement with Iyeza Health, and conferred on Viatris an exclusive right.

Viatris has an established consumer health business in South Africa, and is expected to expand sales of the Atomo’s HIV self-test into pharmacies and other private sector channels in the country.

“In this post-COVID environment, we are seeing a return to growth for HIV testing and the emergence of ‘consumer-initiated testing’ as a key driver of growth in the diagnostic market,” said Atomo’s CEO, John Kelly.

Volpara Health (ASX:VHT) meanwhile said it has amended a contract with Akumin Corp, which was previously announced to the market.

Under the amended contract, Volpara has agreed to Akumin’s request to replace Patient Hub platform with Analytics.

Akumin meanwhile will continue to license the Volpara Scorecard.

Some other key changes in the contract include revenue share arrangement with additional payments of up to US$1.25m for Volpara.


Estia asks Bain to improve offer

Aged care company Estia Health (ASX:EHE) rose modestly after saying the $3 per share offer it received from Bain Capital on March 24 is not “compelling having regard to price and conditionality.”

In order to determine if Bain Capital is able to formulate an improved proposal, Estia Health has offered to provide Bain a limited period of access to its books on a non-exclusive basis.

Elsewhere, immune-oncology company Imugene (ASX:IMU) announced that its Phase 1 MAST (metastatic advanced solid tumours) study evaluating the safety of cancer-killing virus CF33-hNIS (VAXINIA) has dosed the first patients.

The study is continuing its progression on schedule, having now dosed patients in cohort 3 of the IV and IT arms of the monotherapy dose escalation, as well as cohort 1 of the study in combination with Pembrolizumab.

“Still being less than 12 months since the very first patients were dosed, we’re now well advanced on amassing the critical data we require to publish on the outcomes of this study, and we remain very positive on the potential benefit to patients,” said Imugene CEO, Leslie Chong.


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