Adagene achieves key milestone in collaboration with Exelixis for new SAFEbody® masked antibody-drug conjugate candidates

– Successful nomination of key SAFEbody candidates triggers milestone payment –

SAN DIEGO and SUZHOU, China, December 22, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) – Adagene Inc. (“Adagene”) (NASDAQ: ADAG), a biopharmaceutical company committed to transforming the discovery and development of novel antibody-based immunotherapies, today announced the achievement of a key milestone in its ongoing collaboration with Exelixis for the development of novel masked antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) candidates leveraging Adagene’s proprietary SAFEbody precision masking technology. Under a collaboration and license agreement established in early 2021, Adagene will receive a milestone payment of $ 3 million for the successful nomination of SAFEbody top candidates for one of its collaboration programs.

“We are extremely proud to have successfully delivered SAFEbody lead candidates to Exelixis after starting our collaboration earlier this year. Exelixis’ selection of these prime candidates further validates our proprietary SAFEbody technology and highlights the prowess of our global DPL platform, ”said Peter Luo, Ph.D., Co-Founder, CEO and President of ‘Adagene. “Our SAFEbody masking technology receives clinical validation in our ongoing clinical trial of our anti-CTLA-4 monoclonal antibody program, and also marks a potential paradigm shift in how a very potent modality such as ADCs can. be designed and developed, ultimately helping to improve the lives of patients with cancer and other debilitating diseases. “

Under the terms of the agreement, Adagene has received an upfront payment of $ 11 million and Exelixis may designate two targets for SAFEbody candidate development during the collaboration. Adagene is eligible for development and commercialization milestones, as well as royalties on net sales of products developed around each of these targets.

SAFEbody technology is designed to overcome the safety and tolerability challenges associated with many antibody treatments by using precision masking technology to protect the binding domain of biologic therapy. This helps improve targeting of tumor-specific antibodies, while minimizing off-target toxicity on the target in healthy tissue, a long-standing challenge with many antibody-based treatments.

In addition to ongoing collaborations, Adagene is also applying its SAFEbody technology to develop candidates for its deep, broad and differentiated wholly owned pipeline. These include ADG126, a phase 1 dose escalation anti-CTLA-4 SAFEbody as monotherapy, as well as five highly differentiated programs in IND studies such as ADG153, an anti-CTLA-4 SAFEbody. -CD47 using the powerful IgG1 isotype -Bispecific POWERbody ™ T-cell receptor CD20xCD3. A total of five antibodies are under clinical development by Adagene and its partners, leveraging the company’s AI-powered antibody discovery and development platform.

About Adagene
Adagene Inc. (NASDAQ: ADAG) is a platform-driven, clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company committed to transforming the discovery and development of novel antibody-based cancer immunotherapies. Adagene combines computational biology and artificial intelligence to design new antibodies that meet unmet patient needs. Powered by its proprietary Dynamic Precision Library (DPL) platform, comprised of NEObody ™, SAFEbody® and POWERbody ™ technologies, Adagene’s highly differentiated pipeline includes new immunotherapy programs. Adagene has forged strategic collaborations with reputable global partners who leverage its technology in multiple approaches at the forefront of science.

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SAFEbody® is a registered trademark in the United States, China, Australia, Japan, Singapore, and the European Union.

Safe Harbor Declaration

This press release contains forward-looking statements, including statements regarding the potential implications of the clinical data for patients, and Adagene’s anticipated clinical progress and activities, clinical development, regulatory milestones and the commercialization of its product candidates. . Actual results may differ materially from those shown in forward-looking statements due to various important factors including, but not limited to, Adagene’s ability to demonstrate the safety and efficacy of its drug candidates; the clinical results of its drug candidates, which may not support further development or regulatory approval; the content and timing of decisions made by relevant regulatory authorities regarding the regulatory approval of Adagene drug candidates; Adagene’s ability to achieve commercial success for its drug candidates, if approved; Adagene’s ability to obtain and maintain intellectual property protection for its technology and drugs; Adagene’s dependence on third parties to carry out drug development, manufacturing and other services; Adagene’s limited operating history and Adagene’s ability to obtain additional financing for its operations and to complete the development and commercialization of its drug candidates; Adagene’s ability to enter into additional collaborative arrangements beyond its existing strategic partnerships or collaborations, and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Adagene’s clinical development, business and other operations, as well as the risks more fully discussed in the “Risk Factors” section in the documents filed by Adagene with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. All forward-looking statements are based on information currently available to Adagene, and Adagene makes no commitment to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, unless required by law. .

Internal contact:
Friend Knoefler
[email protected]

External contact:
Bruce mackle
LifeSci Advisors
[email protected]

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