The A-Z Business Wire

By Querida Anderson
Published: Monday, Aug 16, 2010
The A-Z Business Wire

Adherex Buys Back GSK’s Rights to Failed Cancer Drug

Adherex Technologies Inc. purchased all GlaxoSmithKline’s options related to failed cancer drug Eniluracil. The announcement of this deal on January 18 amended a development and license agreement signed on July 14, 2005.

“Today’s agreement brings the development and commercialization of eniluracil under our control and provides the flexibility

for Adherex to develop the product alone or to collaborate or partner with other parties as we feel most appropriate,” said William P. Peters, MD, PhD, chairman and CEO.

Eniluracil is being developed to improve the therapeutic value of chemotherapy 5-fluorouracil by making it orally active, with fewer side effects and potentially more effective. According to Adherex, Eniluracil failed in GSK’s phase III trials because of a dose- and schedule-dependent drug interaction that resulted in ineffective activation of 5-FU. Adherex will owe an upfront fee of $1 million upon closing around March 1 and development and sales milestone payments and sales royalties.





Archemix and Merck Partner on Aptamer-Based Cancer Therapeutics

Archemix and Merck KGaA signed a multiyear, multitarget agreement that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialization of first-in-class aptamer-based therapeutics to treat cancer.

“Archemix is the leader in the field of aptamers, a new class of drugs that has tremendous potential in the battle against cancer,” Bernhard Kirschbaum, executive senior VP and director of research for newly-formed Merck Serono noted in a January 17 press release. According to the transaction, Archemix will receive an upfront payment.

Merck KGaA will provide research funding of approximately $10 million. Additionally, Archemix could receive milestones and royalties for any product commercialized. The company also may participate in the co-promotion of such products.

“This alliance is the fourth major partnership we have formed over the past six months,” Errol De Souza, PhD, president and CEO of Archemix, commented, “and is consistent with our strategy to enable partners to leverage aptamers as drugs on

a target-by-target basis.”





CEL-SCI Receives $15 Million Commitment for Cancer Drug Manufacturing Facility

BioProperties, Inc. will acquire and build out to CEL-SCI’s specifications a turn-key CGMP drug manufacturing facility for its cancer candidate, according to a letter of intent signed on January 22. CEL-SCI’s Multikine® was recently approved to enter phase III trials.

“We will be able to produce our drug Multikine in our own CGMP facility for phase III trials as well as for sale once marketing approval is granted,” explained Geert Kersten, CEO of CEL-SCI. “An additional benefit of having this facility is that, during the phase III study, it may also be used for contract manufacturing work with other biotech companies and/or the U.S. government

since it will contain a clean cold-fill suite.”

BioProperties, a privately held real estate firm specialized in the biomedical sector, committed $15 million. The facility is expected to cost about $12 - 14 million, which will be paid through a long-term lease agreement.





Genentech and Seattle Genetics Ink Deal Potentially Worth $860 Million

Genentech and Seattle Genetics, Inc. will together develop and commercialize SGN-40, a humanized monoclonal antibody currently in phase I and phase II trials for multiple myeloma, chronic lymphocytic leukemia and non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Under the terms of the exclusive worldwide license agreement, reported on January 8, Seattle Genetics will receive an

upfront payment of $60 million. The company stands to earn milestone payments exceeding $800 million, including $20 million

in the first two years, plus escalating double-digit royalties on annual net sales.

Genentech will fund future research, development, manufacturing and commercialization costs of SGN-40 that targets the

CD40 antigen. Seattle Genetics will continue certain phase I and phase II trials and development activities and also retains US

co-promotion rights.





Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Launches $1-Billion Campaign


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