AstraZeneca, the multinational biopharmaceutical company, has made a deal with the Israeli drugmaker, Compugen that provides AstraZeneca with the rights to develop bi-specific and multi-specific antibodies based on one of its pipeline programs. According to the deal, AstraZeneca will pay $10 million upfront and up to $200 million in milestones on the first product. It can also develop additional genetically engineered antibodies derived from the Compugen program, but it has to pay more royalties along with all the R&D costs to the Israeli firm.
This immune-oncology deal will let the biopharmaceutical company to monetize specific scientific advances in its programs and enable it to advance its lead programs into clinical trials. Compugen president and CEO, Dr. Anat Cohen-Dayag said, “We are excited to announce our agreement with MedImmune, a global leader in the development of antibody-based oncology therapeutics. We are committed to our strategy of selectively collaborating with biopharmaceutical companies for the development of first-in-class products against our diverse, computationally-derived portfolio of targets.”
AstraZeneca is yet to reveal further details of the project, but Compugen’s activity in the recent years offers some insights. MedImmune, the research and development arm of AstraZeneca, believes that its expertise in antibody engineering along with the agreement can advance its goal of delivering treatments to meaningfully improve the lives of cancer patients.