OncoGenex hunts for prostate cancer drug partner

Xconomy writer Luke Timmerman profiles the small Seattle-based biotech OncoGenex, which is developing prostate cancer drug OGX-011. The low-profile company merged with the failed Sonus Pharmaceuticals last May, allowing it to go public. In a trial presented at ASCO, men who took OGX-011 in combination with docetaxel, survived about 6.9 months longer than those who got docetaxel alone.

OncoGenex wants to start pivotal trials of the drug. But at a projected cost of $70 million, the company doesn't have the money or the staff to handle that kind of trial. So the Bothell, WA-based developer is on the hunt for a partner to help finance the next step of OGX-011's development. CEO Scott Cormack says negotiations are competitive and that he believes a deal will be signed before the end of the year. OncoGenex will select a partner based on cancer drug expertise and the extent of their plans for OGX-011. Cormack is hoping to find a company that will further explore the drug's utility for other indications, including breast cancer.

- for the full profile read the Xconomy article