Micromet and Nycomed will collaborate on the development of anti-GM-CSF antibodies that may be useful for the treatment of inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. The lead product candidate is Micromet's MT203, a human antibody that neutralizes granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF).
Preclinical studies support the development and evaluation of MT203 for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, asthma, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, according to Micromet. The candidate is expected to enter clinical trials in 2008.
Under the terms of the agreement, Micromet will receive an upfront license fee of approximately $7 million, or EUR 5 million. It also is eligible to receive R&D reimbursements and payments upon the achievement of development milestones of more than $160 million, EUR 120 million. In addition, the company will earn royalties on worldwide sales of MT203 and other products that may be developed under the agreement.
Micromet will be primarily responsible for performing preclinical development, process development, and manufacturing for early clinical trials. Nycomed will handle clinical development and commercialization on a worldwide basis. Nycomed will bear the cost of development activities and reimburse Micromet.