HASSELT, Belgium, July 27, 2017 /PRNewswire/ --
Complix, a biopharmaceutical company developing a pipeline of transformative protein therapeutics, called Alphabodies™, for the treatment of cancer and severe autoimmune diseases, announced today that MSD (also known as Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ., USA, in the United States and Canada), through a subsidiary, has exercised its option for a second cancer target program, which triggers an option fee payment to Complix.
Under the terms of the agreement, which started in December 2015, Complix has been utilizing its proprietary Alphabody platform to deliver Cell Penetrating Alphabodies (CPABs) against the first of two intracellular cancer targets (with the second target under option). This research work has been funded by MSD, which has an option to the exclusive worldwide rights for any of the resulting candidates. On the basis of results obtained in the first target program MSD has now decided to exercise its option on the second target.
Dr Mark Vaeck, CEO of Complix, said: "MSD´s decision to exercise its option on a second target is a strong validation of our technology and expertise and the data we have generated to-date. We very much look forward to continuing our highly productive working relationship with MSD."
"Biologicals that are able to modulate intracellular disease targets with great precision and potency are now starting to attract interest in the pharmaceutical industry. We believe that Complix, based on our CPAB platform, is well positioned to become a global leader in generating a novel class of cancer therapeutics that can deliver a step change in treatment outcomes based on their ability to address key intracellular targets," Mark added.
Alongside its collaboration with MSD, Complix is also progressing its own cutting-edge pipeline of CPABs for the treatment of cancer, focusing on undruggable or complex intracellular targets. Its most advanced program addresses the intracellular protein MCL-1 which is an important regulator of cellular apoptosis implicated in a number of cancers including several types of hematological cancers. Initial in-vivo data generated with Complix´s anti-MCL-1 CPAB suggest this approach holds great promise for the development of a novel first-in-class therapeutic against this challenging target.
CPABs are a revolutionary class of small proteins that combine the advantages of antibodies, like high affinity and target specificity with some of the benefits of small chemicals, like extreme stability and cell penetration capacity. Data available show that CPABs have the potential to address a wide range of disease targets, including intracellular targets that are difficult for current therapies to reach. To date, Complix has shown that CPABs have the unique ability to enter tumor cells effectively and selectively modulate intracellular protein-to-protein interactions, which play a key role in the initiation and progression of a broad range of cancers. CPABs are also able to enter many different types of tumor cells and remain stable within the tumor tissue for up to 24 hours post administration.
Complix is a biopharmaceutical company developing a pipeline of novel biotherapeutics, called Alphabodies™, for the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases.
Alphabodies are a revolutionary class of protein therapeutics that have the potential to address a wide range of disease targets, in particular intracellular targets that are considered undruggable by current drug formats, such as antibodies or small chemicals.
Complix´s current R&D efforts are focused on the development of Cell Penetrating Alphabodies (CPABs) that have demonstrated a unique capacity to enter tumor cells and tissues effectively and selectively modulate intracellular protein-to-protein interactions (PPIs), which play a key role in the initiation and progression of cancer.
In December 2015 Complix signed a strategic collaboration with MSD, through a subsidiary, to develop novel Alphabody based therapeutics against two intracellular cancer targets. Complix is eligible to receive up to $280 million in upfront and development and regulatory milestones as well as tiered mid-single digit royalties on global sales revenues.
Since its founding in 2008 Complix has raised a total of more than €27 million in venture financing.