RAMOT At Tel Aviv University And Merck To Collaborate On Antibody-Drug Conjugate Research

Tel Aviv, Israel, January 25, 2017 - Ramot, the business engagement company of Tel Aviv University, today announced a sponsored research collaboration agreement with Merck, a leading science and technology company, with the goal of advancing the development of novel Antibody-Drug Conjugates (ADCs) for cancer therapy.

The collaboration is based on the inventions developed at the laboratories of Prof. Ronit Satchi-Fainaro from the Faculty of Medicine and Prof. Doron Shabat from the School of Chemistry. It involves a novel type of chemical linkage that enables the tagging of drugs, or payloads that are considered untaggable, to ADCs, potentially improving significantly their efficacy and safety.

The parties will collaborate on the development of novel linker-chemistry for the production of next-generation ADCs. The agreement provides Merck with the option to obtain a license to Ramot’s existing ADC linker technology, as well as to the new discoveries made as a result of the collaboration.

"This is a strategic agreement for Tel Aviv University, as it may overcome key limitations in the ADC technology, opening the door to generating multiple life-saving therapies for cancer”, said Dr. Adi Elkeles, VP BD Life Sciences, Ramot. “We look forward to expanding additional promising collaborations between our organizations in the coming years”.

A joint steering committee comprised of representatives from both organizations will supervise the project.

About Ramot

Ramot is Tel Aviv University’s Business Engagement Center. Ramot fosters, initiates, leads, and manages the transfer of new technologies from university laboratories to the marketplace by performing all activities relating to the protection and commercialization of inventions and discoveries made by faculty, students, and other researchers. Ramot provides a dynamic interface connecting industry to leading-edge science and innovation, offering new business opportunities in a broad range of emerging markets.

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