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Oxford BioTherapeutics Licenses Nerviano Medical Sciences' Drug-Linker Technology to Develop Novel Antibody Drug Conjugates

6 April 2016

Oxford BioTherapeutics Licenses Nerviano Medical Sciences' Drug-Linker Technology to Develop Novel Antibody Drug Conjugates

Oxford BioTherapeutics (OBT), a company developing a range of innovative Antibody Drug Conjugates (ADCs) for the treatment of cancer and Nerviano Medical Sciences (Nerviano), a company of the NMS Group dedicated to the discovery and development of breakthrough treatments for cancer today announce that they have signed a license agreement that will allow OBT to utilise Nerviano's novel 'payload' (drug-linker) technology to expand its ADC development portfolio, which is designed to meet multiple unmet needs in the field of cancer.

Under the agreement, OBT has licensed Nerviano's payload technology for an exclusive OBT target for development of an ADC. The agreement also allows for evaluation of additional ADC development candidates with favourable activity/safety profiles, for which OBT will have the opportunity to exercise options to further licenses to the drug-linker technology on an antigen-exclusive basis. As a result of this agreement, Nerviano will receive undisclosed fees, development linked milestones and royalties for granting OBT access to its technology. Nerviano will lead the effort in the manufacture and supply of its novel drug-linker technology.

OBT's current ADC pipeline has been generated using the Company's proprietary OGAP® targeting platform, and includes novel antibodies and proven drug-linker technologies accessed from leading companies in the field. The deal with Nerviano gives OBT access to a new payload technology based on a next-generation duocarmycin analogue.

Nerviano's novel drug-linker technology of new DNA intercalating agents is based on a proprietary thienoindole scaffold, characterized both by potent antitumor activity and by physicochemical properties that are highly compatible with deployment as antibody payloads. Nerviano's core technologies in the field further include: medicinal chemistry expertise, know-how for establishing proof of concept, GMP manufacturing of payloads as well as efficacy and safety profiling of ADC's.

Christian Rohlff, CEO of OBT, commented: "We are making excellent progress towards our goal of becoming a world leader in developing ADCs for the treatment of cancer. We are very pleased to have signed today's deal with Nerviano as it provides us with access to its next generation drug linker technology for ADCs. We are looking forward to working with the Nerviano team to develop additional ADC candidates that are designed to address unmet needs in cancer."

Andrea Agazzi, President of NMS Group, commented: "We are pleased to have signed this licensing deal with OBT. We believe that their expertise in ADCs will allow us together to fully capitalise on the significant potential of Nerviano's next generation drug linker technologies to develop the ADCs that are clearly needed to improve the lives of patients with cancer."