United States: Akin Gump Counsels Roswell Park in Groundbreaking U.S.–Cuba Partnership
Last Updated: November 2 2016

A team from Akin Gump is advising Buffalo, N.Y.-based Roswell Park Cancer Institute in a historic collaboration with Cuba-based Center of Molecular Immunology (CIM). This includes work that has secured a first-of-its-kind U.S. government license authorizing a U.S.–Cuba commercial partnership to fast-track biotech development that will help bring a groundbreaking Cuban lung cancer vaccine and other unique cancer treatments developed in Cuba to U.S. patients. This represents a landmark event in the broader rebuilding of bilateral relations between Cuba and the United States under the Obama administration's new policy of engagement.

The announcement was made today by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Roswell Park's president and CEO Dr. Candace Johnson, who announced that a partnership conceived during the Governor's historic New York State Trade Mission to Cuba last year has resulted in this milestone of international collaboration: the launch of a U.S. clinical trial of an immunotherapy developed in Cuba by the CIM for lung cancer.

Akin Gump assisted Roswell Park in obtaining the historic Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) license, just approved by the U.S. Department of the Treasury, authorizing the Institute to enter into a joint business venture with the CIM—the first time OFAC has authorized a U.S.–Cuban joint venture. Roswell Park has also received authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to begin offering the lung cancer treatment vaccine CIMAvax-EGF® to a limited number of patients through a clinical trial, making the National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center the first American institution to receive FDA permission to sponsor testing of a Cuban medical therapy in the United States.

Recognizing Akin Gump's role in this history-making project, Dr. Johnson said in public remarks today, "Our legal team has been incredible. We were going where no one has gone before. There are only a few law firms in the country [with a practice] devoted to Cuban affairs, and Akin Gump in Washington provided us with incredible service."

The Akin Gump team representing Roswell Park in this matter as part of the firm's  Cuba practice  is led by international trade partner Wynn Segall, and includes international trade senior counsel Nnedinma Ifudu Nweke and associate  Dallas Woodrum, cross-border transactions senior counsel Melissa Schwartz, public law and policy senior policy advisor Anya Landau French, health care and life sciences partner Nathan Brown, international trade partners Dan Feldman  and  Steve Kho, public law and policy partner  Scott Parven, corporate partner  Terry Schpok, cross-border transactions partner  Tom Trimble  and international trade associate  Johann Strauss.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Press Releases from this Firm
Recent Content from this Firm
By Elizabeth Marie Dulong Scott, Robert S. Salcido, Robert K. Huffman, A. Michael Warnecke, David M. Zensky, Stephen M. Baldini, Prakash H. Mehta, James A. Deeken, Ann E. Tadajweski, Steven D. Seybold
By Neal Marder, Hyongsoon Kim, Ashley Vinson Crawford, Michelle Reed, Robert Pees, Anthony Pierce, Jeffery A. Dailey, Garrett Llewellyn, Jenna Mersereau Nalchajian
By John J. Marciano III, Daniel Phillip Sinaiko, Scott Cockerham
By Rehan Safiullah
By Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP
By Jennifer Richter, Mark A Aitken
By Julian Nichol
By Bruce E. Simonetti, Michael Roebuck
By Jasper Helder, Chiara Klaui, Daniel Lund
By John M. White, J. Porter Wiseman, George (Chip) Cannon Jr.
Font Size: