Genentech, Roche, and GlycArt (a company wholly-owned by Roche) have entered into a collaboration that includes a license from GlycArt to Genentech for the joint development and commercialization of GlycArt’s GA101 molecule. The companies will develop GA101, a humanized anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody engineered to increase both direct- and immune-mediated target cell death, for the potential treatment of hematological malignancies and other oncology-related B-cell disorders such as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Under the agreement, the three companies will share certain development costs and Genentech will record $105 million in R&D expenses in 3Q08. Genentech will receive commercialization rights in the U.S. GA101 is currently in Phase I/II trials for CD20-positive B-cell malignancies, such as non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) and chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). GlycArt and Roche plan to provide Phase I data at the American Society of Hematology meeting in December 2008.
Pablo Umaña, chief scientific officer and co-founder of GlycArt, said, “With its unique mode of action, we believe GA101 has the potential to extend the therapeutic benefit over current standards of care, including treatment for patients who do not respond to current therapies.”
“This collaboration with GlycArt and Roche for the GA101 molecule complements our existing research program and our focus on innovative compounds,” said Hal Barron, M.D., Genentech's senior vice president, development and chief medical officer. “We are pleased that through this program we may have the potential to offer a new option to treat patients with hematological malignancies.”
“Our early investment in pioneering technologies continues to provide new hope for patients,” said William M. Burns, chief executive officer, Roche Pharmaceuticals. “The exciting work in antibody engineering carried out by our scientists at GlycArt can now be taken to the next stage in developing clinically differentiated treatments.”
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Published October 3, 2008
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