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Xencor's technology focuses on the use of antibody and protein biotherapeutics to treat immune-related diseases.
Novo Nordisk and Xencor announced on Dec. 18, 2014 that the companies are partnering to develop novel biologic drug candidates. Novo will use Xencor’s XmAb engineering technology to augment natural antibody immune functions for the treatment of various conditions.
Xencor will be eligible to receive up to $175 million in upfront payments, royalties, regulatory and sales milestones, research support, and clinical development. Novo will contribute to the collaboration by helping with candidate discovery.
The XmAb Bispecific Fc domain technology is unique in that it contains bispecific antibodies, which are capable of simultaneously binding to two targets via two different variable domains. Through this technology, molecules can engage the target and also modulate desired immune functions using the XmAb immune inhibitor technology through tailored Fc domains that target FcγRIIb, or CD32b, the predominant Fc receptor present on B cells.
"This collaboration marks the first time we have used our new XmAb bispecifics technology, which consists of stable and easily expressed heterodimeric Fc domains that allow us to build robust molecules in a variety of formats that preserve many beneficial features of antibodies,” noted Bassil Dahiyat, PhD, Xencor's president and CEO, in a press release. “The combination of our bispecific Fc domains with our unique FcγRIIb targeting technology allows us to create novel molecular structures and to explore a range of functional properties during discovery.”