Symphogen Receives Milestone Payment from Genentech for Antibody Therapeutic Against Infectious Disease Target
COPENHAGEN, Denmark and PRINCETON, New Jersey (November 30, 2010) – Symphogen A/S announced today that it has received an undisclosed milestone payment related to an antibody therapeutic in development under its ongoing collaboration with Genentech, Inc., a member of the Roche Group (SIX: RO, ROG; OTCQX: RHHBY). The collaboration covers antibody therapeutics against three infectious disease organisms.
“The achievement of this milestone demonstrates Symphogen’s ability to rapidly identify antibodies of therapeutic relevance from patients using our unique Symplex discovery platform,” stated Kirsten Drejer, M.Sc., Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Symphogen.
”The increasing severity of infectious diseases has made the pharmaceutical industry aware of the importance of making antibody-based drugs to fight infections. Our results show that the human immune system may be an excellent source for potential new antibody drugs.”
Under terms of their 2008 agreement, Genentech made an undisclosed upfront payment to Symphogen as well as an equity investment in the Company. The total value of the agreement, including research- and development-related milestones and royalty payments, had the potential to exceed $330 million.
The Symplex™ antibody discovery process begins by isolating B-lymphocytes, which are responsible for making antibodies, from naturally immune human donors displaying a high number of antibodies against a particular target antigen, such as an infectious agent. The Symplex™ technology enables the exact identity of the original donor antibody repertoire to be maintained and mimics the natural human immune response. All processes leading to the isolation of specific antibodies have been automated, making Symplex™ a fast method to generate naturally high-affinity and high-specificity drug leads.
Symphogen’s Sympress™ technology uses a proprietary mammalian expression platform to enable the manufacturing of target-specific, fully human recombinant polyclonal antibodies. Based on industry-standard antibody expression cell lines, Sympress™ enables consistent and reproducible manufacturing of recombinant polyclonal antibodies.
Symphogen is developing superior antibody therapeutics (monoclonal, monoclonal mixtures and polyclonal) to help people with serious diseases and significant unmet medical needs. With its proprietary, unique Symplex™ discovery and Sympress™ manufacturing platforms, the company captures the diversity and specificity of the natural immune response in rationally designed recombinant antibody compositions. Symphogen is maturing a diversified pipeline of internal and partnered products across multiple indications including cancer, autoimmune and infectious disease. Symphogen is a private biopharmaceutical company headquartered in Copenhagen, Denmark, with a US subsidiary in Princeton, New Jersey.
Kirsten Drejer, Chief Executive Officer
+45 22 10 99 59 or +45 61 18 74 94
David Pitts (media)
+1 212 600 1902
Robin Snyder, Ph.D.
Director, External Communications
Genentech Corporate Relations