Oxford BioTherapeutics and Menarini Group have initiated the first-in-human clinical study of OBT357, a novel enhanced antibody for the treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML). This is the first of five development programs between the two companies to enter the clinic in a $1 billion strategic oncology alliance.
Oxford BioTherapeutics and the Menarini Group established their strategic partnership in October 2012, covering the development and commercialization of five of Oxford BioTherapeutics’ proprietary antibody-based cancer therapies. In October 2013, the companies designated OBT357 (MEN1112) targeting AML as the first clinical development candidate in the partnership.
The phase I study of OBT357/ MEN1112, a recombinant, humanized antibody targeting an undisclosed antigen expressed on AML blasts and the AML stem cell compartment, will be conducted in major European leukemia treatment centers in Belgium, France, Germany and Italy.
“The initiation of the first clinical program in our co-development collaboration with Menarini is an important strategic milestone,” said Dr Christian Rohlff, Oxford BioTherapeutics’ CEO. “Oxford BioTherapeutics has built a strong pipeline of innovative cancer therapeutics by combining leading antibody-based technologies with its world-class discovery capabilities, and we look forward to accelerating further candidates into the clinic as part of our major oncology alliance with Menarini.”
The partnership was recently identified as the second largest antibody and antibody-drug conjugate technology platform deal globally during the past five years.