Adimab broadens R&D deals with Novartis, Regeneron, Takeda

Adimab closed out 2018 with 10 new partnerships and six expanded deals. The drug discovery player is continuing that streak with three more deal expansions, with Novartis, Regeneron and Takeda. 

The Lebanon, New Hampshire-based company uses a yeast cell-based platform to discover and produce antibodies. It says this method is faster and easier than conventional techniques such as phage display technology or making antibodies in animal systems. 

It makes two types of deals: antibody discovery, in which Adimab uses its technology to discover and optimize antibodies against a target or targets specified by the partner, and what it calls platform transfer, in which the partner uses Adimab’s platform at its own site. Last year, with Adimab’s help, its partners came up with 56 new drug programs, the company says. 

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Novartis is one of Adimab’s earliest partners, having teamed up with the biotech in 2010. The duo expanded their deal in 2017 and is doing so again now. Under the latest expansion, Adimab will use its discovery and engineering platform to create antibodies to be developed as treatments against nine targets picked by Novartis. As with the other deal expansions, Adimab kept mum on the disease area these targets would be in, as well as on the financials. 

In 2014, Regeneron enlisted Adimab to create a unique antibody library and to discover antibodies for six targets. Since then, Regeneron has advanced antibodies against one of those targets into preclinical work. Now, the pair are broadening their pact to include antibodies for six additional targets. 

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Takeda inked a multi-target partnership with Adimab in 2016 and now, the Japanese pharma is pulling the trigger on a platform transfer deal. Takeda will pick up licenses to use Adimab’s tech at multiple research sites to discover both antibody-based and non-antibody-based protein therapies. 

“Adimab’s antibody discovery platform will help us diversify our pipeline beyond small molecules, expand our modalities for monoclonal antibody therapeutics, and advance other mechanisms of action enabled by antibody binders, including cell therapies, cytotoxic payloads, immunomodulatory payloads and others,” said Robert Mabry, Takeda’s head of global biologics research, in a statement. 

Of the more than 280 new therapeutic programs that Adimab’s partners have brought forward, almost one-third have come out of platform transfer deals, said Guy Van Meter, Adimab chief business officer.