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GEN News Highlights : Feb 6, 2007

WEHI and Genentech Partner on Novel Cancer Treatment

Agreement builds on institute's research on the proteins that govern apoptosis.

The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research (WEHI) and Genentech formed a partnership that will build WEHI’s research regarding the therapeutic potential of regulating the activity of proteins that control the normal and healthy process of apoptosis.

The exclusive global collaboration agreement includes discovery, development, manufacture, and commercialization of this potential new class of broad-spectrum cancer therapeutics. “A drug that targets the apoptotic process, resulting in the targeted death of cancer cells, may have great potential for therapy," notes WEHI cancer researcher, Jerry Adams.

Genentech will make upfront and research program payments, with the possibility of milestone and royalty payments.

"Our research at WEHI has produced an encouraging series of small molecule drug candidates that we believe should stimulate apoptosis and aid cancer treatment,” Adams asserts.