Heptares and Kymab enter into novel antibody therapeutics collaboration

The companies hope to create stable antigens based on multiple G protein-coupled receptor targets

Heptares Therapeutics, the wholly-owned subsidiary of Sosei Group, has entered into a strategic collaboration with leading human monoclonal antibody biopharmaceutical company Kymab, to discover, develop and commercialise novel antibody therapeutics targeting a number of G protein-coupled receptors (GPCR) with an initial focus on immuno-oncology.

Under the agreement, Heptares will apply its StaR platform to create stable antigens based on multiple GPCR targets chosen by the companies. Kymab will then use its Kymouse human antibody discovery platform to generate antibodies in response to immunisation with these antigens. The Kymouse platform will assure the highest probability of finding the best-in-class antibodies with highly attractive drug properties.

Promising leads will be progressed using the partners’ complementary skills, resources and development capabilities to bring innovative products into the clinic. Under the agreement, the companies will jointly conduct and share the costs of each antibody discovery and development programme.

'GPCRs have long been intractable targets for antibody discovery resulting in dearth of products. We believe that our proven StaR technology can unlock this substantial opportunity, not just in immuno-oncology but also across other therapeutic areas where GPCR-targeted biologics could have a significant impact,' said Malcolm Weir, Chairman and CEO of Heptares. 'By entering into strategic collaborations with companies with world-leading antibody discovery technologies, such as Kymab, we have the potential to discover, develop and commercialise a highly valuable pipeline of new biologic products.'

David Chiswell, CEO of Kymab, said: 'Antibodies are important therapeutic agents for cancer and other indications. Our collaboration with Heptares will allow us to combine stable antigens based on multiple GPCR targets with our world-class Kymouse platform, which has unparalleled diversity and will therefore rapidly identify and yield highly selective potent human monoclonal antibodies for unmet medical needs.'

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