Pharma Focus Asia

Takeda and Molecular Templates Announce Multi-Target Research and Licensing Collaboration

Friday, August 04, 2017

Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited and Molecular Templates, Inc. today announced a collaboration agreement for oncology drug discovery programs. The collaboration will apply Molecular Templates’ engineered toxin bodies (ETB) technology platform to potential therapeutic targets provided by Takeda through a joint scientific committee of both companies.

“Over the past year, Takeda has expanded its collaborations in the Oncology space with the aim of accessing highly-innovative platforms to target specific tumor antigens using novel payloads and modality approaches,” said Christopher Arendt, Ph.D., Head, Oncology DDU & Immunology Unit, Takeda. “In fact, we had already been working with the Molecular Templates team on a program that we have the option to in-license. The announcement of today’s collaboration with Molecular Templates allows us to extend this partnership and leverage their potentially groundbreaking approach to address additional tumors types, including solid tumors. The Molecular Templates team is outstanding, and we look forward to expanding our partnership.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Takeda will make an equity investment and Molecular Templates is eligible to receive upfront payments, development and commercial milestone payments, Takeda has agreed to royalties on the sales of commercial products developed through the collaboration. Under the agreement, Takeda will also appoint a Director to Molecular Templates’ board of directors.

“This collaboration is an exciting opportunity to develop a new class of oncology therapeutics by applying our modified Shiga-like toxin fusion proteins to Takeda’s world-class oncology target portfolio,” said Eric Poma, Ph.D., Molecular Templates’ Chief Executive and Scientific Officer. “Takeda’s oncology expertise and drug development capabilities represent unique assets for combination with our approach to targeting and destroying cancer cells, and we look forward to developing products via this new avenue of oncology research.”

Takeda will have the right to exercise exclusive options to obtain license rights to products resulting from the collaboration. Molecular Templates would be responsible for manufacturing and supply of products licensed for development by Takeda through Phase I clinical development. Additional terms of the agreement are not being disclosed.

Takeda signed this agreement through its wholly owned subsidiary, Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

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