Proteros to receive upfront and research funding plus milestone payments of up to $126 million plus royalties
Proteros biostructures GmbH today announced that it has signed an agreement with Merck Sharp & Dohme Corp., Whitehouse Station, NJ, USA (“MSD”) to discover and develop small molecule compounds against an epigenetic target for the potential treatment of various types of cancer.
Under the agreement, MSD gains access to Proteros’ proprietary technology and structure guided discovery platform. Upon signing, MSD will pay an upfront payment and research funding. In addition Proteros will be eligible for up to $126 million in research, development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments plus tiered royalties on annual net sales. Proteros will be responsible for the discovery of lead compounds and MSD will be responsible for the development, manufacturing and commercialization.
Commenting on the announcement, Dr. Torsten Neuefeind, CEO of Proteros said: “We are delighted to work with MSD in the area of epigenetics. Our unique proprietary assay technologies in combination with our powerful structure guided Lead Discovery platform opens gateways for novel epigenetic targets. We believe that Proteros’ technology has the potential to provide access to truly novel compounds against the selected target, which could potentially transform the treatment of many cancers”.
”We look forward to collaborating with Proteros in the area of epigenetics – which represents an exciting and promising new approach to the cancer clinical research landscape,” said Dr. Eric Rubin, vice president and therapeutic area head, oncology early stage development, MRL. “Today’s announcement is yet another example of MSD’s commitment to seek out and develop truly innovative approaches that will accelerate our ability to bring forward breakthrough cancer therapies.”
Additional details of the collaboration were not disclosed.
About epigenetics and Proteros’ expertise in epigenetics:
Epigenetics (“outside of genetic”) addresses a novel paradigm in the organization of genetic information and covers a broad class of enzymes and hundreds of potential drug targets.
Epigenetic changes -unlike genetic alterations -provide the potential to reverse disease processes. Reversing those changes with epigenetic drugs is a fundamentally new opportunity in drug discovery.
Proteros’ proprietary assay technologies provide access to efficacious screening approaches thus opening gateways to address epigenetic mechanisms for new medicines.