BMS Partners With Simcere as Low-Cost Strategy to Advance Prospective Cancer Drug

| About: Simcere Pharmaceutical (SCR)

Simcere Pharma (NYSE: SCR) has partnered with Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE: BMY) to co-develop a cancer molecule. In return for exclusive China rights to BMS-817378, a small molecule MET/VEGFR-2 inhibitor, Simcere will conduct a first-in-human clinical trial of the drug candidate as a first step toward SFDA approval. Financial details of the partnership were not disclosed.

Last year, BMS announced it would conduct a dose-ascending trial of BMS-817378, in patients with severe or metastatic solid tumor cancers. Before patient registration began, BMS withdrew the trial without explanation. BMS planned to enroll patients in Australia and Singapore.

Apparently, BMS is using the partnership as a low-cost strategy to advance the prospective drug. It characterized the partnership with Simcere as a “novel approach to leverage its early stage pipeline.” BMS will retain all ex-China rights to the drug.

Simcere, which makes both branded generic and proprietary drugs in China, developed the innovative cancer treatment Endu, a modified version of recombinant human endostatin with an anti-angiogenesis mechanism. It is approved in China for patients with non-small cell lung cancer.

Disclosure: none.