Nerviano Medical Sciences announces Collaboration Agreement with Genentech to discover small molecule inhibitors of certain anti-cancer targets.
Nerviano, 9th January, 2008 - Nerviano Medical Sciences (NMS), the largest pharmaceutical R&D facility in Italy and one of the leading oncology-focused, integrated discovery and development companies in Europe, today announced an agreement with Genentech, Inc. under which the two companies will collaborate in the discovery of small molecule inhibitors which may be suitable for development as anticancer agents.
Genentech, which is considered the founder of the biotechnology industry and is the leading oncology company in the United States, will have the exclusive option to fully develop and commercialize these clinical candidates.
The collaboration will initially involve two oncology targets and, if mutually agreed, additional targets to be designated at a later stage.
During the course of the collaboration, NMS will provide high throughput screening (HTS) assays and reagents suitable for screening the entire Genentech compound library, and will subsequently mature the hit compounds provided by Genentech into potential drug candidates that may meet clinical development criteria.
Terms of the multi-year risk sharing collaboration include a partial funding of the costs incurred by NMS for the conduct of each research program. If Genentech exercises its options, the two initial research programs may have a combined potential return for NMS of up to USD 310 million in development and regulatory milestones, in addition to royalty payments for each collaboration compound commercialized. If Genentech does not exercise its option for any target, NMS shall also have the right to develop and commercialize the collaboration compounds for such target.
"This agreement between Genentech and Nerviano Medical Sciences marks a new achievement in our collaboration strategy", said Umberto Rosa, President of Nerviano Medical Sciences. "We are very excited about the prospect of collaborating with Genentech. We believe that by working together and applying our complementary world class research capabilities, we may be able to develop innovative products for patients suffering from cancer."
"We are very pleased to enter into this collaboration with Genentech, as both companies share a common goal to discover innovative drugs in oncology", added Giampiero Duglio, CEO of Nerviano Medical Sciences. "I believe that Nerviano's expertise in the discovery and development of candidates suitable for clinical development may lead to innovative and valuable products for the market."
About Nerviano Medical Sciences
Nerviano Medical Sciences (NMS) is a research based company dedicated to the discovery and development of breakthrough new chemical entities (NCEs) for the treatment of cancer. NMS was incorporated in May 2004 as a spin-off from Pfizer and is wholly owned by the Rome-based Congregazione dei Figli dell'Immacolata Concezione (CFIC).
The company is among the largest oncology-focussed, integrated R&D sites in Europe. Nearly 650 people work within three seperate units: Oncology R&D, Preclinical Development and Pharmaceutical Sciences. Nerviano delivers an average of two product candidates per year. NMS preclinical pipeline includes 16 projects dealing with kinase and non-kinase oncology targets. NMS has five NCEs in clinical development for oncology indications.
NMS leverages on strategic alliances with biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies for the discovery and development of innovative cancer therapies for securing long-term sustainability of the business.
NMS has already in place agreements with major pharmaceutical companies such as Pfizer Inc. and Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. as well as with biotechnology companies and academia