Roche bags cancer drug antibodies with $8M upfront

Galaxy Biotech, a Sunnyvale, CA-based lab founded by some high-profile investigators, has picked up an $8 million upfront fee from Roche, which has in-licensed the rights to a portfolio of their antibodies for cancer drug research. The biotech reports that the pharma giant has also committed itself to an undisclosed slate of milestones and royalties for the antibodies, which target fibroblast growth factor 2, a key target in metastasis.

Roche ($RHHBY) says it's been impressed by the animal data it's seen so far, indicating that the antibodies have the potential to inhibit tumors in humans. 

"Galaxy's humanized monoclonal antibody to FGF2 has demonstrated considerable promise in preclinical studies, and we look forward to developing this and possibly other derivative compounds to complement Roche's already strong portfolio of antibody products in the oncology field," says Mike Burgess, acting head of Roche Pharma Research and Early Development.  

The decade-old Galaxy was founded by Cary Queen, who also co-founded Protein Design Labs, as well as Jin Kim, a former senior scientist at Genentech, and James Larrick, who has been involved in several startups. Geller Biopharm was Galaxy's exclusive agent for this license agreement.

- here's the press release