Eli Lilly and Co. and AstraZeneca have entered a worldwide agreement to co-develop MEDI1814, an antibody selective for amyloid-beta 42 (Aβ42), which is currently in Phase I development as a potential disease-modifying treatment for Alzheimer's disease (AD). This agreement expands the collaboration related to AZD3293, a BACE inhibitor in Phase III development. AstraZeneca will receive a $30 million upfront payment from Lilly.
The build-up of plaques in the brain containing the peptide amyloid-beta (Aβ) is one of the characteristics of AD. MEDI1814 binds selectively to Aβ42, a form of Aβ which is particularly associated with the disease. Binding dose-dependently reduces levels of this peptide, potentially slowing the progression of AD.
Jan Lundberg, Ph.D., executive vice president of science and technology and president of Lilly Research Laboratories, said, "We are pleased to be expanding our alliance with AstraZeneca to further build our pipeline of potential medicines and diagnostic agents. AstraZeneca brings capabilities and expertise and most importantly shares our passion to bring new medicines to patients suffering from this debilitating illness."
"We are excited to build on an already productive collaboration with Lilly, which combines the expertise of our two companies, with a new program focused on the amyloid-beta pathway," said Mene Pangalos, executive vice president, IMED Biotech Unit and Business Development, AstraZeneca. "MEDI1814 has a unique mechanism among antibodies in clinical development and could provide a distinct approach to treating Alzheimer's disease."