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AstraZeneca signs $200m deal with Bind for cancer drug

Follows deals with Amgen and Pfizer for Bind involving its Accurin nanotechnology

AstraZeneca (AZ) has signed another deal to prop up its product pipeline, this time allocating up to $200m for rights to a cancer drug in development at US drug delivery specialist Bind Therapeutics.

The development and commercialisation agreement gives AZ worldwide rights to a drug in Bind's Accurin programme, which uses nano-engineering technology to develop formulations of cancer drugs that selectively seek out diseased tissues and cells.

For Bind, the deal with AZ rounds off a fertile few weeks that have already seen it sign Accurin licensing deals with Amgen and Pfizer, respectively worth up to $180m and $210m-plus.

AZ and Bind will apply the Accurin technology to a kinase inhibitor developed by the UK pharma company and work together on preclinical studies of the drug. Thereafter, AZ will have exclusive development and commercialisation rights while Bind has responsibility for manufacturing during the drug's development.

According to Reuters, the unidentified molecule showed activity in models of cancer but had to be abandoned because of delivery and toxicity issues. The intention is to advance the candidate into clinical trials within 12 to 18 months.

All told, the deal is worth $69m to Bind in upfront and pre-approval milestones, plus another $130m or more in regulatory and sales milestones. The US company also stands to receive double-digit royalties on any eventual sales.

Bind has already taken its own docetaxel-bearing Accurin candidate, BIND-014, into clinical trials in cancer patients, and with three big pharma clients now on board its platform is now comprehensively endorsed.

BIND-014 targets tissues expressing prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA), a cell-surface protein that is expressed on certain cancer cells as well as new blood vessels that feed a wide array of solid tumours. BIND-014 is due to start phase II testing in multiple cancer indications this year.

22nd April 2013

From: Research

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