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The companies will be expanding their collaboration to discover novel therapies that will include up to eight additional targets using CytomX’s proprietary Probody platform.
On March 20, 2017, Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) and CytomX Therapeutics announced that they would be extending their 2014 strategic collaboration to discover novel therapies that will include up to eight additional targets using CytomX’s proprietary Probody platform. Probody therapeutics are designed to take advantage of conditions in the tumor microenvironment to enhance the tumor-targeting features of an antibody and reduce drug activity in healthy tissues. Probody therapeutics remain inactive until they are activated by proteases in the tumor microenvironment and bind selectively to cells within tumor tissue with reduced binding to healthy tissue, potentially improving or creating a therapeutic window. Probody therapeutics may also have application in other diseases where proteases are dysregulated in affected tissues.
As part of the original collaboration signed in May 2014 to discover, develop, and commercialize Probody therapeutics, BMS selected four oncology targets, including CTLA-4. In the collaboration to date, BMS has progressed the CTLA-4 Probody therapeutic to investigational new drug-enabling studies and the three other programs are in the lead discovery and optimization phase.
Under the terms of the agreement, CytomX will grant BMS exclusive worldwide rights to develop and commercialize Probody therapeutics for up to six additional oncology targets and two non-oncology targets. BMS will make an upfront payment of $200 million to CytomX and, in addition, will provide research funding over the course of the research term. CytomX will also be eligible to receive up to $448 million in future development, regulatory, and sales milestone payments for each collaboration target, as well as tiered royalties from the mid-single digits to low-double digits on net sales of each product commercialized by BMS.