Active Biotech enters into global patent license agreement with Oncode Institute for tasquinimod in myelofibrosis
Lund, February 9, 2022 - Active Biotech (NASDAQ STOCKHOLM: ACTI) today announced it has entered into an exclusive license agreement with Oncode Institute in the Netherlands, for the global rights to patents relating to the use of tasquinimod and other inhibitors of S100 for use in treatment of myelofibrosis (MF).
Under the terms of the agreement, Oncode Institute, a foundation incorporated under the laws of the Netherlands, acting on behalf of Erasmus Universiteit Medisch Centrum (Erasmus MC), grants a global exclusive license to develop and commercialize tasquinimod worldwide in MF to Active Biotech. Active Biotech will pay to Oncode Institute, contingent of marketing approval, milestones as well as low single-digit royalties on net sales.
Recently, Dr. Rebekka Schneiders group at Erasmus MC in Rotterdam published data showing that tasquinimod ameliorated the disease in an experimental MF mouse model (Leimkuhler et al., Cell Stem Cell. 2021 Apr 1;28(4):637-652). The data presented in the publication show that treatment with tasquinimod results in normal blood counts, reduction of fibrosis in the bone marrow and normalization of spleen size in this mouse model. The results suggest that tasquinimod can act as a disease modifying agent in MF.
Active Biotech and Erasmus MC will initiate a research collaboration related to use of tasquinimod in MF, that includes preclinical as well as a clinical proof of concept study in patients with MF. The clinical study will be financed by Oncode.
“Licensing of these patent rights is an important step in the potential broadening of the scope for tasquinimod in the area of hematological malignances with high unmet medical need. There are only limited treatments available for MF and we look forward to work together with Rebekka Schneider and her team at Erasmus MC to further explore the opportunity of tasquinimod in the disease”, said Helén Tuvesson, CEO Active Biotech.
For further information, please contact:
Helén Tuvesson, CEO, +46 46 19 21 56, email@example.com
Hans Kolam, CFO, +46 46 19 20 44, firstname.lastname@example.org
This information is information that Active Biotech AB is obliged to make public pursuant to the EU Market Abuse Regulation. This information was submitted for publication, through the agency of the contact person set out above, at 09:30 am CET on February 9, 2022.
Tasquinimod is an oral immunomodulatory and anti-angiogenic investigational treatment, that affects the tumor's ability to grow and metastasize. Tasquinimod is developed as a new immunomodulatory treatment for hematological malignances in the first step multiple myeloma. Tasquinimod has previously been studied as an anti-cancer agent in patients with solid cancers, including a phase III randomized trial in patients with metastatic prostate cancer. The tolerability of tasquinimod is well-characterized based on these previous experiences. Tasquinimod has demonstrated a clear therapeutic potential in preclinical models of multiple myeloma, when used as a single agent and in combination with standard multiple myeloma therapy. A clinical Phase Ib/IIa study is ongoing with tasquinimod in relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma.
Myelofibrosis (MF) is a rare blood cancer belonging to a group of disorders called myeloproliferative neoplasms. The underlying cause of MF is unknown. The estimated annual incidence of MF is 0.4 - 1.3 cases per 100 000 people in Europe. Patients with MF have an abnormal production of blood-forming cells leading to the replacement of healthy bone marrow with scar tissue (fibrosis). Due to the lack of normal blood cell production patients typically present with laboratory value abnormalities such as anemia and changes in white blood cell counts and blood cell-differentiation. Later symptoms include enlargement of the spleen, an increased risk for infections, night sweats and fever. MF is associated with shortened survival and causes of death include bone marrow failure and transformation into acute leukemia. MF can be treated with bone marrow transplantation for eligible individuals, erythropoietin to manage anemia and JAK inhibitors to reduce spleen size. At present there are no approved therapies that would reverse bone marrow fibrosis in MF.
Active Biotech AB (publ) (NASDAQ Stockholm: ACTI) is a biotechnology company that deploys its extensive knowledge base and portfolio of compounds to develop first-in-class immunomodulatory treatments for specialist oncology and immunology indications with a high unmet medical need and significant commercial potential. Following a portfolio refocus, the business model of Active Biotech aims to advance projects to the clinical development phase and then further develop the programs internally or pursue in partnership. Active Biotech currently holds three projects in its portfolio: Naptumomab, a targeted anti-cancer immunotherapy, partnered to NeoTX Therapeutics, is in a phase Ib/II clinical program in patients with advanced solid tumors. The small molecule immunomodulators, tasquinimod and laquinimod, both having a mode of actions that includes modulation of myeloid immune cell function, are targeted towards hematological malignancies and inflammatory eye disorders, respectively. Tasquinimod, is in clinical phase Ib/IIa for treatment of multiple myeloma. Laquinimod is in a clinical phase I study with a topical ophthalmic formulation, to be followed by phase II for treatment of non-infectious uveitis. Please visit www.activebiotech.com for more information.
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