Nordic Nanovector and Heidelberg Pharma enter collaboration to develop novel antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) targeting leukaemias
Oslo, Norway, 26 October 2016
Nordic Nanovector ASA (OSE: NANO), announces it has entered into a collaboration with Heidelberg Pharma GmbH, a subsidiary of biopharmaceutical company WILEX AG (FSE: WL6) specializing in the development of antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), to develop novel ADCs for treating leukaemias. Leukaemias are orphan diseases with a significant unmet medical need, applicable indications representing a growing market worth over USD 5 billion by 2020.
This collaboration is part of Nordic Nanovector’s strategy to develop its pipeline of targeted therapies to include antibody products conjugated to anti-cancer compounds that are not radionuclides. Such conjugates are commonly referred to as ADCs.
Jostein Dahle, Nordic Nanovector’s Chief Scientific Officer, commented: “We are pleased to further expand our R&D activities into the ADC area with Heidelberg Pharma in this second strategic collaboration, following closely the collaboration announced recently with LegoChem. During the past year, we have made important steps to execute our strategy designed to build a pipeline of innovative antibody-radionuclide conjugates (ARCs) and ADCs that combine our expertise and platform with complementary technologies from expert partners. This strategy is aimed at creating multiple new targeted treatment options for patients who suffer a range of leukaemias and lymphomas.”
Professor Dr Andreas Pahl, Head of Research & Development and member of the Management Board of WILEX and Heidelberg Pharma, commented: “This project extends our portfolio of ADCs to further haematological cancers. Nordic Nanovector has an established chemistry, manufacturing, and controls (CMC) process for their antibody which will speed up processes and reduce the development costs of an ADC.”
For further information, please contact:
For Nordic Nanovector
Luigi Costa, Chief Executive Officer
Cell: +41 79 124 8601
Tone Kvåle, Chief Financial Officer
Cell: +47 91 51 95 76
Mark Swallow/David Dible (Citigate Dewe Rogerson)
Tel: +44 207 282 2948/+44 207 282 2949
For Heidelberg Pharma
Tel.: +49 (0)89-41 31 38-29
Grillparzerstr. 18, 81675 Munich, Germany
MC Services AG
Katja Arnold (CIRO)
Managing Director & Partner
Tel.: +49 (0)89-210 228-40
Mobile: +49 (0)160 9360 3022
About Nordic Nanovector:
Nordic Nanovector is a biotech company focusing on the development and commercialisation of novel targeted therapeutics in haematology and oncology. The Company’s lead clinical-stage product opportunity is Betalutin®, the first in a new class of Antibody-Radionuclide-Conjugates (ARC) designed to improve upon and complement current options for the treatment of non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL). NHL is an indication with substantial unmet medical need and orphan drug opportunities, representing a growing market worth over $12 billion by 2018.
Betalutin® comprises a tumour-seeking anti-CD37 antibody, lilotomab (previously referred to as HH1), conjugated to a low intensity radionuclide (lutetium-177). The preliminary data has shown promising efficacy and safety profile in an ongoing Phase 1/2 study in a difficult-to-treat NHL patient population. The Company is aiming at developing Betalutin® for the treatment of major types of NHL with first regulatory submission anticipated in 1H 2019.
Nordic Nanovector intends to retain marketing rights and to actively participate in the commercialisation of Betalutin® in core markets, while exploring potential distribution agreements in selected geographies. The Company is committed to developing its ARC pipeline to treat multiple selected cancer indications.
Further information about the Company can be found at www.nordicnanovector.com
This information is subject to the disclose requirements pursuant to section 5-12 of the Norwegian Securities Trading Act.
About WILEX and Heidelberg Pharma’s proprietary ATAC technology:
WILEX AG is a biopharmaceutical company based in Munich, Germany, that serves as a parent and holding company. The Company’s research and development work is conducted by its subsidiary, Heidelberg Pharma GmbH in Ladenburg. Heidelberg Pharma is focused on developing an innovative ADC technology platform based on the compound Amanitin (ATAC technology) and also provides preclinical drug research and development services.
Antibody drug conjugates (ADCs) combine the high affinity and specificity of antibodies with the potency of cytotoxic small molecules for the treatment of cancer and inflammatory diseases. ATACs are ADCs that are bound to highly potent amatoxin molecules. Amatoxins are small bicyclic peptides naturally occurring in the death cap mushroom. They inhibit mRNA transcription by binding to RNA polymerase II, a mechanism that is crucial for the survival of eukaryotic cells. In preclinical testing, ATACs have been shown to be highly efficacious, overcoming frequently encountered resistance mechanisms and combatting even quiescent tumor cells.
Heidelberg Pharma is working on several ATAC candidates with industry partners as well as on its own ATAC pipeline. The lead candidate HDP-101, a BCMA ATAC, has been selected for the preclinical and clinical development in multiple myeloma, the third most common hematologic cancer.
WILEX has diagnostic and therapeutic Phase III drug candidates, which are available for out-licensing. WILEX is listed at the Frankfurt Stock Exchange: ISIN DE000A11QVV0 / WKN A11QVV / Symbol WL6. More information is available at www.wilex.com and www.heidelberg-pharma.com.
Press Release 51/2016.