$112 million ADC collaboration marks third Bristol-Myers Squibb/Ambrx deal in two years
SAN DIEGO—On May 3, Ambrx Inc. entered into a collaboration agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. for the discovery and development of novel antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) against cancer, using Ambrx's protein medicinal chemistry technology. This announcement marks Ambrx's third deal with Bristol-Myers Squibb since 2011.
Under terms of the agreement, Ambrx will receive an upfront payment of $15 million, funding for discovery and research activities, and potential development, regulatory and sales-based milestone payments of as much as $97 million per product resulting from the collaboration. Bristol-Myers Squibb will receive worldwide rights to develop and commercialize products resulting from the collaboration, while Ambrx is eligible to receive royalties on net sales.
This follows the announcement of a big ADC deal with Japan's Astellas Pharma Inc. in April—like the most recent Bristol-Myers Squibb deal, oncology is the focus—for $15 million up front and as much as $285 million in potential near- and long-term research, development, regulatory and sales-based milestones.
The two previous agreements with Bristol- Myers Squibb were separately inked, though both were finalized in September 2011. One targets fibroblast growth factor 21 (FGF-21)—a naturally occurring protein with reported benefits on lowering blood glucose, raising HDL cholesterol and reducing weight—for the potential treatment of type 2 diabetes. The other deal centers on Relaxin, a hormone involved with childbirth, for the potential treatment of heart failure.
"Bristol-Myers Squibb is a global biopharmaceutical leader with expertise developing and commercializing novel medicines for the treatment of cancer and other diseases, and we are pleased to enter into a third collaboration with the company to include another aspect of our technology platform," said Dr. Lawson Macartney, CEO of Ambrx. "We look forward to working together to further utilize Ambrx's technology to discover and advance these antibody drug conjugates for oncology indications."