London and Stevenage, United Kingdom
CANCER RESEARCH TECHNOLOGY, Cancer Research UK’s commercial arm, Tusk Therapeutics, an immuno-oncology company and UCL (University College London) have signed a licence and collaboration agreement to research, develop and commercialise an antibody-based therapeutic against a target that plays a key role in immune suppression in cancer.
Under the terms of the agreement, Tusk Therapeutics will receive an exclusive world-wide licence from CRT to develop and commercialise therapeutic antibodies against the target, originating from the Cancer Research UK-funded research of Dr. Sergio Quezada and Professor Karl Peggs at UCL. In return, CRT will receive an upfront payment, future success-based milestones and royalty payments, which will be shared with UCL.
Tusk Therapeutics has additionally entered into a three-year collaboration with CRT and UCL to part-fund a programme of preclinical work, led by Dr. Quezada, to evaluate candidate antibodies in various cancer models prior to initiation of formal preclinical and clinical development. At the end of the collaboration, Tusk Therapeutics will assume responsibility for accelerating the progress of selected antibody candidates into the clinic.
Dr Quezada said: “It is extremely exciting seeing years of preclinical work move closer to a potential real therapy for patients. We are very happy with the work to date and that which we will continue doing with the Tusk Therapeutics’ team.”
Luc Dochez, CEO of Tusk Therapeutics, said: “We are proud to work together with Cancer Research UK and the group of Dr. Quezada. The collaboration fits Tusk’s strategy of working with top researchers in the immune-oncology field and to bring promising assets from early stage discovery through development and to the clinic.”
Dr Phil L’Huillier, CRT’s director of business management, said: “This collaboration brings together Cancer Research UK’s and UCL’s world-leading immune-oncology expertise with Tusk Therapeutics’ growing industry reputation for developing promising immune-modulating antibodies. It’s one of several projects now in our portfolio focused on the up-and-coming field of immune-oncology that we hope will accelerate progress towards exciting new treatments for cancer patients.”
About UCL (University College London)
UCL was founded in 1826. We were the first English university established after Oxford and Cambridge, the first to open up university education to those previously excluded from it, and the first to provide systematic teaching of law, architecture and medicine. We are among the world’s top universities, as reflected by performance in a range of international rankings and tables. UCL currently has over 38,000 students from 150 countries and over 12,000 staff. Our annual income is more than £1 billion.
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About Cancer Research Technology
Cancer Research Technology (CRT) is a specialist commercialisation and development company, which aims to develop new discoveries in cancer research for the benefit of cancer patients. CRT works closely with leading international cancer scientists and their institutes to protect intellectual property arising from their research and to establish links with commercial partners. CRT facilitates the discovery, development and marketing of new cancer therapeutics, vaccines, diagnostics and enabling technologies. CRT is a wholly owned subsidiary of Cancer Research UK, the world’s leading cancer charity dedicated to saving lives through research. Further information about CRT can be found at www.cancertechnology.com and here
About Cancer Research UK
· Cancer Research UK is the world’s leading cancer charity dedicated to saving lives through research.
· Cancer Research UK’s pioneering work into the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer has helped save millions of lives.
· Cancer Research UK receives no government funding for its life-saving research. Every step it makes towards beating cancer relies on every pound donated.
· Cancer Research UK has been at the heart of the progress that has already seen survival in the UK double in the last forty years.
· Today, 2 in 4 people survive their cancer for at least 10 years. Cancer Research UK’s ambition is to accelerate progress so that by 2034, 3 in 4 people will survive their cancer for at least 10 years.
· Cancer Research UK supports research into all aspects of cancer through the work of over 4,000 scientists, doctors and nurses.
· Together with its partners and supporters, Cancer Research UK’s vision is to bring forward the day when all cancers are cured.
For further information about Cancer Research UK’s work or to find out how to support the charity, please call 0300 123 1022 or visit www.cancerresearchuk.org. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
About Tusk Therapeutics
Tusk Therapeutics is a biotechnology company with a focus on harnessing the power of the immune system to fight cancer through the development of novel immune modulating therapeutics. The company was founded in 2015 and secured a 30 million EUR series A round in November 2015. Tusk Therapeutics has established a diversified pipeline of antibodies against both novel and validated targets that play an important role in the body’s immune response to cancer. The company is actively pursuing three programs that are expected to enter preclinical development in 2017.
Tusk Therapeutics Ltd. is based in Stevenage at the Stevenage Bioscience Catalyst (Greater London/Cambridge area).
For further information about Tusk Therapeutics Ltd. visit www.tusktherapeutics.com.