Seattle Genetics Gets Boost from Cancer Drug Deal with Takeda

Includes: SGEN, TKPHF
by: The Burrill Report

Seattle Genetics (NASDAQ:SGEN) has scored a $365 million deal for commercialization of its late-stage Hodgkin’s lymphoma treatment SNG-35 with Millennium, Takeda's (OTCPK:TKPHF) U.S. cancer subsidiary. The deal provides a boost to the Seattle-based company, which days earlier saw Genentech (DNA) end its partnership over a separate lymphoma drug SNG-40. Seattle Genetics halted development of SNG-40 in October because data from an ongoing mid-stage clinical trial showed patients were not benefiting from the treatment.

Under the terms of the deal, Seattle Genetics gets $60 million upfront, payments for half its worldwide developments costs—likely worth $75 million according to Takeda, and a schedule of milestone payments that could yield as much as $230 million. The agreement gives Takeda worldwide commercialization rights outside the United States and Canada, for which Seattle Genetics retains rights.

SNG-35, also known as Brentuximab vedotin, is currently being investigated in patients with some types of Hodgkin’s lymphoma, a cancer of lymph tissue found in the lymph nodes, spleen, liver, and bone marrow or systemic anaplastic large cell lymphoma, a fast-growing type of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Both diseases are considered rare.

Pivotal data about Brentuximab vedotin's effectiveness is due in the second half of 2010. If all goes well, the company expects to file for approval to market the drug in the United States and Europe in 2011.

"This collaboration closely aligns with our growth strategy, which includes both internal and external opportunities," says Deborah Dunsire, Millennium's president and CEO. "We are very excited to bring forward a novel medicine which will help us increase our reach in oncology throughout Europe and the rest of the world."