Dyax and Kadmon Corporation LLC yesterday announced they have entered into a strategic licensing agreement granting Kadmon an exclusive worldwide license for developing and commercializing the fully human monoclonal antibody DX-2400, which is a potent and selective antibody inhibitor of matrix metalloproteinase 14 (MMP-14). A key enzyme in a molecular pathway, MMP-14 is thought to play a role in tumor blood vessel formation (angiogenesis), as well as in affecting tumor growth and cell migration. According to the terms of the agreement, Dyax will be given an upfront payment and is eligible for significant development and commercial milestone payments, as well as tiered royalties on commercial sales up to a double-digit rate. Kadmon will be responsible, as an exclusive licensee, for further developing and commercializing DX-2400, which is presently in application-enabling studies for an investigational new drug (NYSE:IND) application.
The strategic agreement further validates Dyax's capabilities to successfully discover novel antibody drug candidates, utilizing the company's proprietary phage display technology and moving the resulting drug candidates into development. The agreement expands Kadmon's extensive history with Dyax and with the company's antibody technology platform. Kadmon, which has a proven track record of developing and commercializing key new oncology products, believes MMP-14 is an important component in overcoming the growth, proliferation, and resistance mechanisms of cancer. MMP-14's role in tumors and ocular disease neovascularization, in particular, presents a distinctive target opportunity that may complement other antiangiogenic therapies currently on the market and in development.
Targeting MMP-14 offers therapeutic potential in multiple oncology indications where high levels of active MMP-14 have been confirmed in human tumor tissue sample analysis. Dyax has previously demonstrated, in published work, that DX-2400 mediated inhibition of primary tumor growth, metastasis, and angiogenesis in preclinical models of breast, melanoma, and prostate cancer.
Dyax discovered DX-2400 using its "gold-standard" phage display technology, in which the company applied its considerable selection and screening expertise to selectively block catalytic activity of a single protease within a larger and closely related family of enzymes. This antibody is an additional example of the superior functional selectivity that is available to validate novel biologic targets using Dyax's phage display libraries.
A fully integrated biopharmaceutical company, Dyax is engaged in the development and commercialization of novel biotherapeutics for unmet medical needs. Ecallantide, the company's lead product, has received approval in the U.S. under the brand name KALBITOR for treating acute attacks of hereditary angioedema (NYSE:HAE) in patients age 16 and older. The company is independently commercializing KALBITOR in the U.S. and is establishing strategic collaborations to develop and commercialize ecallantide for treating HAE in key regions throughout the world. Dyax currently has collaboration agreements for regions including Europe, Japan, Russia, the Middle East, Australia, and New Zealand. The company is additionally exploring other potential indications for ecallantide, either independently or collaboratively.
Ecallantide and other compounds in the Dyax pipeline were identified using the company's patented phage display technology. The company broadly leverages this technology through the Licensing and Funded Research Program (LFRP). LFRP agreements collectively generate substantial revenue for Dyax in the form of license fees, milestone payments, and/or royalties.
For more information, visit the company's Web site at www.dyax.com
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