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AMRI Licenses Cancer Program

By Gil Roth | February 11, 2013

Chai to take over tubulin compound

AMRI has signed an exclusive license agreement with Chai Therapeutics for the development of ALB 109564(a), AMRI's novel tubulin inhibitor compound. The compound is in late Phase I testing for the treatment of cancer. This pact follows the exercise of an option to license the intellectual property, which was granted in March 2012 by AMRI to Bessor Pharma. Chai Therapeutics is an affiliate of Bessor Pharma, LLC.

AMRI received an undisclosed license fee and reimbursement for certain costs associated with the intellectual property related to ALB 109564(a). Chai Therapeutics received an exclusive license to the program's intellectual property, and will be solely responsible for all related R&D and patent costs going forward; AMRI will receive a share of future consideration from the further development and sales, if any, of any ALB 109564(a)-related drug that may be developed, licensed, or commercialized.

"We are very pleased to continue to work with Bessor on the further development of AMRI's novel tubulin inhibitor," said AMRI chairman and chief executive officer Thomas E. D'Ambra, Ph.D. "The recent formation of Chai Therapeutics to focus on the development of our compound is a strong statement by our partners of the potential benefit that this technology could ultimately deliver to cancer patients. Dr. Berkowitz and his team have a proven track record of success in drug development and we are confident in their ability to move this program forward."

The tubulin inhibitor program is an asset developed from AMRI's past R&D investments. The company is pursuing strategic opportunities to advance the clinical development of its compounds and programs to create near- and long-term value.

Barry A. Berkowitz, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer of Bessor, commented, "In AMRI's work to date, ALB 109564(a) has shown significant promise as a next generation tubulin inhibitor for the treatment of cancer. Through our integrated network of drug development and clinical experts and the flexible structure afforded by Chai, we plan to advance the clinical program to further define the compound's potential.  ALB 109564(a) is one of several translational projects in Bessor's growing portfolio that it is advancing to key value points."

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