Astellas Pharma and Ambit Biosciences will end their collaboration for the joint development and commercialization of FMS-like tyrosine kinase-3 (FLT3) inhibitors, including quizartinib, effective September 3, 2013. The companies will transfer current development activities to Ambit, which will regain all rights and continue the quizartinib clinical program in acute myeloid leukemia (AML).
"While our decision is based on strategic reasons, we are proud of our collaborative work with Ambit, and we are committed to working with Ambit on a smooth transition," said Yoshihiko Hatanaka, president and chief executive officer of Astellas. "We remain committed to the field of oncology as a major area of focus for the company and will continue to pursue our goal of becoming a global category leader in oncology."
Michael Martino, president and chief executive officer of Ambit, said, "With the Phase II study results for quizartinib that were presented at the American Society of Hematology (ASH) Annual Meeting last December, we and members of the medical community continue to be excited about quizartinib and its potential to meet a significant, unmet need in AML patients. We are fully committed to moving forward with the Phase III clinical trial plan and look forward to advancing this important drug candidate toward approval."