MorphoSys AG (FSE: MOR; Prime Standard Segment, TecDAX, OTC: MPSYY) and Emergent BioSolutions Inc. (NYSE: EBS) today announced an agreement for the joint development and commercialization of ES414. The compound, to be renamed MOR209/ES414, is an anti-PSMA/anti-CD3 bi-specific antibody targeting prostate cancer, which was developed by Emergent using its proprietary ADAPTIRTM (modular protein technology) platform. Preclinical in vitro and in vivo studies have shown that MOR209/ES414 redirects T-cell cytotoxicity towards prostate cancer cells expressing Prostate Specific Membrane Antigen (PSMA), an antigen commonly found on such cells.
Under the terms of the agreement, MorphoSys gains worldwide commercialization rights excluding the U.S. and Canada, where Emergent will retain rights. Emergent will receive an upfront payment of US$20 million and will be eligible to receive potential milestone payments of up to US$163 million. The milestone payments are linked to specific events, including successful development of MOR209/ES414 in several indications and securing approval in certain territories. MorphoSys and Emergent will jointly develop MOR209/ES414, with MorphoSys bearing 64% and Emergent 36% of the total costs. Emergent will manufacture and supply clinical material from its manufacturing facilities in Baltimore, Maryland. Emergent will receive low single digit royalties on product sales in MorphoSys's territory and MorphoSys will receive tiered royalties from mid-single digit up to 20% on product sales in Emergent's territory. Additional financial details were not disclosed.
MorphoSys and Emergent plan to initiate a Phase 1 clinical trial evaluating MOR209/ES414 in patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer (mCRPC) within the next six months. The initial phase of the trial will be conducted in the U.S. and Australia, with Emergent as the sponsor.
END OF AD HOC ANNOUNCEMENT
MOR209/ES414 is a targeted immunotherapeutic protein, which activates host T cell immunity specifically against prostate cancer cells expressing Prostate Specific Membrane Antigen (PSMA), an antigen commonly overexpressed on prostate cancer cells. The MOR209/ES414 molecule was constructed using Emergent's ADAPTIR technology platform and selectively binds to the T cell receptor on cytotoxic T cells and PSMA on tumor cells. MOR209/ES414 contains two pairs of binding domains, each targeting a unique antigen, linked to opposite ends of an immunoglobulin Fc domain to extend the half-life and enable use of a purification process typical of lg-based molecules. In preclinical studies, MOR209/ES414 has been shown to redirect T cell cytotoxicity towards prostate cancer cells expressing PSMA.
About the ADAPTIR(TM) Platform
ADAPTIR bispecific proteins are modular, single chain polypeptides that comprise two separate binding domains, a hinge segment, and an effector domain (huFc). They have a differentiated structure from monoclonal antibodies and can generate a unique signaling response. Some ADAPTIR molecules, like MOR209/ES414, may mediate T cell cytotoxicity by redirecting T cells against tumor cells. In addition, monospecific ADAPTIR proteins may mediate complement dependent cytotoxicity and Fc dependent cytotoxicity, similar to monoclonal antibodies.
ADAPTIRand any and all Emergent BioSolutions Inc. brand, product, service and feature names, logos, and slogans are trademarks or registered trademarks of Emergent BioSolutions Inc. or its subsidiaries in the United States or other countries. All rights reserved.
About Prostate Cancer
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men with approximately 230,000 new cases annually in the United States or 900,000 new cases annually worldwide. Screening, radiation, surgery and hormone ablation therapy have greatly improved the detection and treatment of early stage prostate cancer. However, the new therapies only improve life expectancy by a few months for patients with metastatic castration-resistant prostate cancer.
MorphoSys developed HuCAL, the most successful antibody library technology in the pharmaceutical industry. By successfully applying this and other patented technologies, MorphoSys has become a leader in the field of therapeutic antibodies, one of the fastest-growing drug classes in human healthcare.
Together with its pharmaceutical partners, MorphoSys has built a therapeutic pipeline of more than 80 human antibody drug candidates for the treatment of cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, and Alzheimer's disease, to name just a few. With its ongoing commitment to new antibody technology and drug development, MorphoSys is focused on making the healthcare products of tomorrow. MorphoSys is listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange under the symbol MOR. For regular updates about MorphoSys, visit http://www.morphosys.com.
HuCAL®, HuCAL GOLD®, HuCAL PLATINUM®, CysDisplay®, RapMAT®, arYla®, Ylanthia® and 100 billion high potentials® are registered trademarks of MorphoSys AG.
Slonomics® is a registered trademark of Sloning BioTechnology GmbH, a subsidiary of MorphoSys AG.
About Emergent BioSolutions
Emergent BioSolutions is a global specialty biopharmaceutical company seeking to protect and enhance life by offering specialized products to healthcare providers and governments to address medical needs and emerging health threats. Additional information about us may be found at www.emergentbiosolutions.com. Follow us on twitter: @emergentbiosolu.
ADAPTIRTM is a trademark of Emergent BioSolutions.
MorphoSys Safe Harbor Statement
This communication contains certain forward-looking statements concerning the MorphoSys group of companies. The forward-looking statements contained herein represent the judgment of MorphoSys as of the date of this release and involve risks and uncertainties. Should actual conditions differ from the Company's assumptions, actual results and actions may differ from those anticipated. MorphoSys does not intend to update any of these forward-looking statements as far as the wording of the relevant press release is concerned.
Emergent BioSolutions Safe Harbor Statement
This press release includes forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Any statements, other than statements of historical fact, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements in this press release include statements about the potential and therapeutic opportunity of the MOR209/ES414 molecule and potential milestone and royalty payments for development, regulatory approval and sales of the product candidate. These forward-looking statements are based on our current intentions, beliefs and expectations regarding future events. We cannot guarantee that any forward-looking statement will be accurate. Investors should realize that if underlying assumptions prove inaccurate or unknown risks or uncertainties materialize, actual results could differ materially from our expectations. Investors are, therefore, cautioned not to place undue reliance on any forward-looking statement. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date of this press release, and, except as required by law, we do not undertake to update any forward-looking statement to reflect new information, events or circumstances.
There are a number of important factors that could cause the company's actual results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements, including the success of clinical trials for MOR209/ES414; the timing of and our ability to obtain and maintain regulatory approvals for MOR209/ES414; the rate and degree of market acceptance and clinical utility of MOR209/ES414 as a product; and our commercialization, marketing and manufacturing capabilities and strategy with respect to MOR209/ES414. The foregoing sets forth many, but not all, of the factors that could cause actual results to differ from our expectations in any forward-looking statement. Investors should consider this cautionary statement, as well as the risk factors identified in our periodic reports filed with the SEC, when evaluating our forward-looking statements.
For more information, please contact:
| Dr. Claudia Gutjahr-Löser
Head of Corporate Communications & IR
Associate Director Corporate Communications & IR
Specialist Corporate Communications & IR
Specialist Corporate Communications & IR
Tel: +49 (0) 89 / 899 27-404