Debiopharm has entered into a worldwide, exclusive license & research agreement with 3B Pharmaceuticals (3BP), a German biotechnology firm, to further the development of their radioligand program, now called Debio 0228, which targets the CAIX (Carbonic Anhydrase 9) enzyme to fight the progression of cancer. This agreement extends the radio-oncology portfolio of Debiopharm which currently includes another clinical stage radiotherapeutic and the radiotherapy-enhancing antagonist of IAPs (Inhibitors of Apoptosis proteins) Debio 1143. The collaboration with 3BP, a renowned expert in theranostic peptide discovery and radioconjugates, is projected to advance the program into clinical development phases of development within 2 years.
Currently in Lead Optimization stage, the Debio 0228 program is set to identify a Development Candidate with best-in-class potential, designed to selectively destroy tumor cells that express the CAIX target. The selected compound will be developed using a theranostic approach, a combination of diagnostic and therapeutic features with the same compound, allowing the pre-identification of patients who have the receptors necessary to respond to the targeted radiotherapy. These potential responders are qualified for their personalized therapy via diagnostic molecular imaging of target expression in their tumor lesions. This emerging field of medicine implies that only those patients who have the capacity to benefit from the treatment will actually receive the therapy, potentially minimizing the time and cost of clinical trials while maximizing patients’ chances of treatment success.
“We believe that targeted radiotherapy is an exciting, innovative treatment modality. 3BP’s novel CAIX targeted program is in right line with our expanding radiotherapy portfolio, keeping Debiopharm on the cutting edge of research that is focused on the specific characteristics of the patient,” said Frederic Levy, Executive Director of Search & Evaluation and Scientific Innovation, Debiopharm.
“We are delighted to enter into this agreement with Debiopharm, a company with a strong commitment to the development of radio-oncology pharmaceuticals. This agreement highlights the rapidly growing importance of nuclear medicine as a further pillar for the treatment of cancer. We believe this is an ideal partnership to advance the development of CAIX-targeted radiopharmaceuticals for the potential benefit of seriously ill patients,” said Ulrich Reineke, Managing Director, 3B Pharmaceuticals.