Micromet Enters Into Agreement for Solid Tumor BiTE Antibody with Bayer Schering Pharma AG
- Category: Antibodies
- Published on Monday, 12 January 2009 01:00
- Hits: 1819
Micromet today announced the signing of an option, collaboration and license agreement with Bayer Schering Pharma AG, Germany
BETHESDA, MA, USA | January 12, 2009 | Micromet, Inc. (Nasdaq: MITI), a biopharmaceutical company developing novel, proprietary antibodies for the treatment of cancer, inflammation and autoimmune diseases today announced the signing of an option, collaboration and license agreement with Bayer Schering Pharma AG, Germany, under which Bayer Schering Pharma has the exclusive option to obtain a license to one of Micromet's preclinical BiTE antibodies against an undisclosed oncology target.
Under the terms of the agreement, Bayer Schering Pharma will pay Micromet a Euro 4.5 million fee (approx. US$ 6 million) to secure a one year option on a specific BiTE antibody. Bayer Schering Pharma may exercise this option prior to January 5, 2010 through the additional payment of an option exercise fee. The exercise of the option would trigger a formal collaboration between Micromet and Bayer Schering Pharma on the development of the BiTE antibody through the completion of phase 1 clinical trials, at which point Bayer Schering Pharma would assume full control of the further development and commercialization of the BiTE antibody. Micromet would be eligible for an option exercise fee and milestone payments of up to Euro 290 million (approx. US$ 390 million) in total and up to double digit royalties based on tiered net sales of the product. In addition, Micromet would be reimbursed for its R&D expenses incurred in connection with the development of the BiTE antibody in the collaboration with Bayer Schering Pharma.
"We are very pleased with Bayer Schering Pharma's interest in this preclinical BiTE antibody program and their financial commitment to secure exclusive access for the next 12 months. This deal represents further validation of our BiTE antibody technology by a major oncology company," said Christian Itin, Micromet's Chief Executive Officer.
"Oncology is one of our core growth areas and biologicals are a key focus of our strategy. We are excited about Micromet's BiTE antibody technology and believe BiTE antibodies represent a novel and promising approach to cancer therapy," said Prof. Andreas Busch, Member of the Board of Management of Bayer Schering Pharma AG responsible for Global Drug Discovery.
About BiTE Antibodies
BiTE(R) antibodies are designed to direct the body's cytotoxic, or cell- destroying, T cells against tumor cells, and represent a new therapeutic approach to cancer therapy. Typically antibodies cannot engage T cells because T cells lack the appropriate receptors for binding antibodies. Previous attempts have shown the potential of T cells to treat cancer, but the therapeutic approaches tested to date have been hampered by cancer cells' ability to escape recognition by T cells. The use of BiTE antibodies that are specifically designed to engage T cells for attacking cancer cells may provide a more effective anti-tumor approach than conventional monoclonal antibodies.
About Micromet, Inc.
Micromet, Inc. (www.micromet-inc.com) is a biopharmaceutical company with offices in Bethesda, MD and Munich, Germany. The Company is focused on developing novel, proprietary antibodies for the treatment of cancer, inflammation and autoimmune diseases. The Company's novel antibody technology is based on its proprietary BiTE antibody platform, representing a new class of antibodies that specifically activate T cells from the patient's own immune system to eliminate cancer cells or other disease related cells. Four of the Company's antibodies are currently in clinical trials, with the remainder of its product pipeline in preclinical development. The Company's lead program is a BiTE(R) antibody known as blinatumomab, or MT103. It is in a phase 2 clinical trial for the treatment of patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia and a phase 1 clinical trial for the treatment of patients with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. Micromet is developing blinatumomab in collaboration with MedImmune, LLC, a subsidiary of AstraZeneca plc. Micromet's second BiTE antibody in clinical development is MT110, which targets the epithelial cell adhesion molecule (EpCAM). The Company owns all rights MT 110, which is currently in a phase 1 clinical trial for the treatment of patients with solid tumors. The Company's third clinical stage antibody is adecatumumab, also known as MT201, a traditional human monoclonal antibody that targets EpCAM-expressing solid tumors. Micromet is developing adecatumumab in collaboration with Merck Serono in a phase 1b clinical trial evaluating adecatumumab in combination with docetaxel for the treatment of patients with metastatic breast cancer. Micromet licensed a fourth clinical stage antibody, MT 293, to TRACON Pharmaceuticals, Inc. MT 293 is developed in a phase 1 clinical trial for the treatment of patients with cancer. The Company's preclinical programs include MT 203 being developed in collaboration with Nycomed. MT 203 is a traditional human antibody neutralizing the activity of granulocyte/macrophage colony stimulating factor (GM-CSF), which has potential applications in the treatment of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis, or multiple sclerosis. Additional BiTE antibodies, targeting CEA, CD33, Her2, EGFR and MCSP, respectively, are in different stages of preclinical development.
SOURCE Micromet, Inc.