07.09.2012 - German Merck KGaA enters a license deal worth up to €495m with Danish Symphogen to receive exclusive rights to a Phase II cancer drug
Symphogen's Sym004 is a recombinant IgG1 antibody product consisting of two antibodies targeting the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR). It is currently being evaluated in a Phase I/II trial for the treatment of patients with advanced KRAS wild-type metastatic colorectal cancer (mCRC) as a second-line treatment. In addition, a single-arm, open-label Phase II trial is on-going in patients with squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (SCCHN) who have failed anti-EGFR-based therapy.
Under the terms of the agreement, Merck will pay Symphogen €20m upfront. The Danish antibody specialist is also eligible to receive up to €225m for clinical development and regulatory milestones, €250m in potential combined sales performance milestones as well as royalties on net worldwide sales. In exchange, Merck will gain exclusive worldwide rights to develop and commercialise Sym004.
Sym004 is designed to block ligand binding, receptor activation and downstream signalling. The antibodies are also thought to elicit removal of the EGFR receptors from the cancer cell surface by inducing EGFR internalisation and degradation. Merck says it sees the program as a natural extension of its Erbitux franchise.
The German pharma giant has come under pressure lately, as important R&D projects, like the oral MS treatment Cladribine, failed. In the wake of the setbacks, it decided to start a major restructuring programme. Merck decided to close down its Merck Serono headquarter in Geneva and lately announced to lay off 1,100 employees in Germany.
29.07.2015 Newly founded Mereo BioPharma has acquired three mid-stage clinical assets from Novartis. In turn, the Swiss pharma concern will hold a stake in the UK company. Other investors are also on board.
24.07.2015 Biotech companies across Europe continue to raise cash on the public markets, generating €3bn in total financing proceedings in the first half of 2015. Compared to 2014, this is almost twice as much.
23.07.2015 US money keeps flowing into Europe's biotechs. As the race for the peanut allergy market heats up, NASDAQ listed French biotech DBV has announced the successful closing of US$281m (€256m) share offering for its allergy products.
16.07.2015 Sanofi has announced plans to restructure its business in five standalone global business units starting in January 2016. The goal is to promote growth and help the company launch a catalogue of new drugs over the next five years.
15.07.2015 GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has become the first drugmaker to join the Francis Crick Institute. It is a consortium made up of six scientific and academic institutes to conduct research and drug development in the UK. The new institute is set to become a world-leading centre of biomedical research and innovation.
10.07.2015 Karolinska Development has slashed the reported value of its portfolio by almost half by revising its valuation model for early stage companies and divesting its shares in pain med maker Pharmanest.
08.07.2015 Horizon Pharma plc. has set its sights on US-American speciality pharma company Depomed Inc. After getting nowhere with the rival’s board, Horizon has now launched a US$3bn hostile bid for the pain and CNS specialist.
The BioShake series contains high-speed mixer and thermal mixer for small and very small volumes in microplates and reaction tubes and allows for the first time high precise and efficient mixing in the microliter scale for a wide range of applications. more