FREISING, Germany, April 13 /PRNewswire/ -- PIERIS Proteolab AG, a biopharmaceutical and protein engineering company has signed an agreement with the biopharmaceutical unit of Syngenta AG of Basel, Switzerland to develop an ANTICALIN(R) based drug for an indication with high unmet medical need. ANTICALINS(R) are engineered receptor proteins with antibody-like functions, which are derived from natural human lipocalin scaffolds, a class of proteins designed by nature to have many different protein and hapten binding functions.
After careful evaluations of the specific need for a highly efficacious therapy as well as commercial factors, both companies came to the conclusion that for this collaboration PIERIS ANTICALINS(R) are potentially superior to the "classic" antibody or other protein scaffold approaches. Under the agreement PIERIS will be responsible for research and for providing the active biopharmaceutical, whereas Syngenta will be responsible for preclinical and clinical development and commercialization. Neither the specific indication nor the financial terms of the agreement were disclosed.
"This collaboration highlights that our ANTICALINS(R) provide a very attractive novel class of engineered protein therapeutics with potentially new and better medicinal properties than currently available antibodies or other protein scaffold approaches," remarked Dr. Volker Lang, PIERIS' Vice President of Business Development.
PIERIS' Chief Executive Dr. Martin Poehlchen, commented, "This is our first collaboration agreement with a biopharmaceutical partner and further validates our ANTICALIN(R)-platform and the business strategy of PIERIS. It will serve as a basis to leverage other partnering activities in the near future."
"Sourcing biologicals with promising therapeutic and commercial potential from innovative biotech companies is an important part of our strategy," said Dr. Antony Blanc, Head of Biopharma for Syngenta AG. "Adding PIERIS to our network of partners expands the number of ways we can approach important disease targets."
About PIERIS Proteolab AG
PIERIS Proteolab AG is a biopharmaceutical company that focuses on the development and commercialization of novel and improved protein therapeutics on the basis of its proprietary ANTICALIN(R) technology. The ANTICALINS(R) are engineered receptor proteins with antibody-like functions derived from natural lipocalins as a scaffold. The company exploits the proprietary ANTICALIN(R) technology for the development of superior human biotherapeutic products, especially in the area of oncology and cardiovascular diseases. Currently, PIERIS has four preclinical product development programmes and intends to prepare the filing for its first IND during 2006.
ANTICALIN(R), ANTICALINS(R), PIERIS Proteolab(R), and the company's logo are registered trademarks or service marks of PIERIS Proteolab AG.
Syngenta is a world-leading agribusiness committed to sustainable agriculture through innovative research and technology. The company is a leader in crop protection, and ranks third in the high-value commercial seeds market. Sales in 2004 were approximately $7.3 billion. Syngenta employs some 19,000 people in over 90 countries. Syngenta is listed on the Swiss stock exchange (SYNN) and in New York (SYT). Further information is available at http://www.syngenta.com/.
Syngenta has set-up a dedicated biopharma unit (http://www.syngenta.com/biopharma) to apply its in-house capabilities and infrastructure to the development of biopharmaceuticals. The biopharma group works with trusted partners within flexible models to ensure maximum value. Successful projects have been initiated with partners including Diversa Corporation, Affimed Therapeutics, SemBioSys Genetics Inc., and the National Jewish Medical and Research Center.
This press release may contain projections or estimates relating to plans and objectives regarding our future operations, products, or services, future financial results or assumptions underlying or relating to any such statements. Each of these projections or estimates constitutes a forward-looking statement subject to risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control. Actual results could differ materially depending on a number of factors, including the timing and effects of regulatory actions, the results of clinical trials, the company's relative success in developing and in gaining market acceptance for any new products, and the effectiveness of patent protection.
PIERIS Proteolab AG