Send to printer »

GEN News Highlights : Feb 23, 2011

Cell Signaling Technology and Astellas Forge Pact for Cancer Drugs and Diagnostics

IP related to EML4-ALK kinase will be pooled, with CST gaining Dx rights and Astellas taking on therapeutic development.

Cell Signaling Technology (CST) and Astellas Pharma are joining forces to develop therapeutics and diagnostics for cancer directed at a particular enzyme. CST has the sole rights to develop medical diagnostics worldwide, and Astellas owns the rights in the field of human therapeutics worldwide.

CST discovered the existence of certain variants of EML4-ALK in human cancer and has clinically validated specific antibodies detecting this enzyme in human cancer tissues from its internal cancer biomarker program. “EML4-ALK is currently one of the most promising therapeutic targets for the treatment of non-small-cell lung cancer,” according to Michael J. Comb, Ph.D., CST president and CEO.

Under its deal with Astellas, both firms have pooled their respective worldwide intellectual property estates relating to the fusion kinase EML4-ALK. Astellas’ cancer pipeline comprises candidates at every stage of development. CST leverages its mAb technology, XMT®, and proteomics platform, PTMScan®, for systems biology research.

XMT provides access to a range of antibody-producing B cells unattainable with traditional monoclonal technologies, according to CST. The resulting XP mAbs are a line of high-quality rabbit monoclonal antibodies. PTMScan technology allows for the identification of post-translational modification sites in cellular proteins. It utilizes immunoprecipitation in conjunction with LC/MS.