MARTINSRIED/MUNICH, Germany, and TOKYO, Japan, September 23
/PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- MorphoSys AG (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: MOR; Prime Standard Segment) announced today that it has formed a strategic marketing cooperation with the Tokyo-based company, GeneFrontier Corporation, in order to access the Japanese life science market. The objective of the cooperation is to drive new business opportunities by establishing the HuCAL(R) technology of MorphoSys as the premium brand for both research and therapeutic antibody generation in Japan. As part of an ongoing pre-marketing agreement between the two companies, several research projects conducted with Japanese partners have been successfully completed. Under the multi-year collaboration, both parties will invest in customer development and marketing in Japan as part of a wider MorphoSys effort to expand geographically into new markets.
As a result of the recently concluded Human Genome Project, the spotlight in biomedical research is shifting rapidly from the genome to proteome-based projects as the key to transform genetic information into pharmaceutical products. The proliferation of these projects is driving an increasing demand for novel research antibodies to study these newly characterized proteins. Moreover, for validated targets which are suitable for therapeutic applications, MorphoSys HuCAL GOLD(R) technology provides a seamless transition from a rapidly generated research antibody to a fully human optimized antibody drug candidate. Thus, MorphoSys sees the potential to position its HuCAL(R) technology as the system of choice for future therapeutic antibody projects conducted by pharmaceutical companies in Japan.
"Both partners see an enormous market potential for research and therapeutic antibodies derived from MorphoSys's HuCAL(R) technology, especially in the light of strong financial commitment from the Japanese government to protein research and its therapeutic applications," commented Mr. Makoto Ogasawara, Chief Executive Officer of GeneFrontier Corp. "Japan, presently the second largest pharmaceutical market in the world, is seeking new innovative technologies in life sciences to continue on its growth path."
"This collaboration is an important step in our strategy to establish HuCAL(R) globally as an industry standard for therapeutic antibody generation, as well as research tools," commented Dr. Simon Moroney, Chief Executive Officer of MorphoSys AG. "We look forward to working with GeneFrontier to expand our business in the lucrative Japanese market."
MorphoSys develops and applies innovative technologies for the production of synthetic antibodies, which accelerate drug discovery and target characterization. Founded in 1992, the Company's proprietary Human Combinatorial Antibody Library (HuCAL(r)) technology is used by researchers worldwide for human antibody generation. The Company currently has licensing and research collaborations with Bayer (Berkeley, California/USA), Biogen Idec Inc. (Cambridge, Massachusetts/USA), Boehringer Ingelheim (Ingelheim, Germany), Bristol-Myers Squibb (Wilmington, Delaware/USA), Centocor Inc. (Malvern, Pennsylvania/USA), GPC Biotech AG (Munich/Germany), Hoffmann-La Roche AG (Basel/Switzerland), ImmunoGen Inc. (Cambridge, Massachusetts/USA), Novartis AG (Basel, Switzerland), Novoplant GmbH (Gatersleben/Germany), Oridis Biomed GmbH (Graz/Austria), Pfizer Inc. (Delaware/USA), ProChon Biotech Ltd. (Rehovot/Israel), Schering AG (Berlin/Germany) and Xoma Ltd. (Berkeley, California/USA). For further information please visit the corporate website at: http://www.morphosys.com/
Statements included in this press release which are not historical in nature are intended to be, and are hereby identified as, "forward-looking statements" for purposes of the safe harbour provided by Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements may be identified by words including "anticipates", "believes", "intends", "estimates", "expects" and similar expressions. The company cautions readers that forward-looking statements, including without limitation those relating to the company's future operations and business prospects, are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Factors that may affect future operations and business prospects include, but are not limited to, clinical and scientific results and developments concerning corporate collaborations and the company's proprietary rights and other factors described in the prospectus relating to the company's recent public offering.
GeneFrontier was established as an innovative solution provider for genome-based drug research & development. GeneFrontier has the strength and wealth of experience of its three founding shareholders; the business creation expertise and broad network of ITX CORPORATION the biotechnology and extensive clinical laboratory experience of BML and the bioinformatics technology and know-how of INFOCOM. GeneFrontier's experienced technical staffs are experts in "wet-lab" and "dry-lab" technologies and can provide efficient and high quality solutions for genome-based drug research & development. GeneFrontier is planning to provide innovative diagnostic products and services for tailored medicine in order to contribute to the improvement of Quality of Life. For further information please visit the corporate website at: http://www.genefrontier.com/
For more information, please contact:
MorphoSys AG GeneFrontier Corporation
Dave Lemus Souta Hara
Chief Financial Officer Manager Business Development
Tel: +49-(0)-89 / 899-27-439 Tel: +81-3-5652-7777
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Director Corporate Communications
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Fax: +49-(0)-89 / 899-27-5122
Tel: +49-(0)-89 / 899-27-454
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