April 7, 2021
Artios Pharma Limited, a leading DNA Damage Response (DDR) company exploiting synthetic lethality to develop a broad pipeline of precision medicines for the treatment of cancer, today announced a global research collaboration with Novartis to discover and validate next-generation DDR targets to enhance Novartis’ Radioligand Therapies (RLT).
Under the three-year collaboration, Artios and Novartis will perform target discovery and validation, and Novartis will select up to three exclusive DDR targets, and receive worldwide rights on these targets to be utilized with its RLT’s.
Dr. Niall Martin, Chief Executive Officer at Artios Pharma, said: “This collaboration expands the reach of our discovery platform, leveraging our DDR expertise and target knowledge to enhance the potential of radioligand therapies. We are thrilled to work with Novartis, and this combined with our recent collaboration with Merck KGaA provides important validation of the power of the internal discovery capabilities at Artios. From a strategic perspective, this collaboration is an ideal fit that maximizes the application of our platform to areas beyond our current focus as we independently advance our pipeline of novel DDR candidates. We look forward to continued momentum as a clinical-stage precision medicine company, building upon our recently initiated Phase 1 study of ART0380, our potential best-in-class ATR inhibitor, with the expected entry of our first-in-class Pol Theta program into the clinic before year-end.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Novartis will make an up-front payment of US$20 million and provide near-term research funding to support the collaboration. Artios will be eligible to receive discovery, development, regulatory and sales-based milestones, in addition to royalty payments on net sales of products commercialized by Novartis. The collaboration does not include Artios’ lead programs, ART0380, which is currently in clinical development, or ART4215, a first-in-class Pol Theta inhibitor.
Novartis’ RLT delivers targeted radiation to a specific subset of cancer cells, with minimal effect on surrounding healthy cells. RLT has been shown to improve overall survival and quality of life, particularly in the setting of cancers with bone metastases.