BERKELEY, Calif., July 13, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Aduro Biotech, Inc. (Nasdaq:ADRO), a biopharmaceutical company with three distinct immunotherapy technologies, announced today that the company has earned a $2.0 million milestone payment under its worldwide licensing agreement with Merck (known as MSD outside the United States and Canada) for work supporting the preparation of an Investigational New Drug Application (IND) for its anti-CD27 antibody.
“We are pleased with the progress being made on the pre-clinical development of the anti-CD27 antibody, which was created with our proprietary B-select monoclonal antibody technology and selected by Merck for continued development,” stated Hans van Eenennaam, Ph.D., chief operational officer, Aduro Biotech Europe. “Aduro’s anti-CD27 antibody targets the CD27 co-stimulatory pathway, an important component in stimulating an anti-cancer immune response. We look forward to working closely with Merck in their effort to advance this promising and novel approach in the field of immunotherapy into clinical development.”
About CD27 and Aduro’s Anti-CD27 Antibody
CD27 is a co-stimulatory receptor expressed on different immune cells, such as T-lymphocytes and NK (natural killer) cells. It has been recognized as having an important role in priming, enhancing and sustaining a productive anti-cancer (CD8 T-cell) adaptive immune response. In preclinical studies, anti-CD27 activation in combination with immune checkpoint inhibition has demonstrated the ability to achieve complete tumor eradication.
In 2014, Merck, through a subsidiary, entered into a worldwide license agreement for the development and commercialization of CD27 antibody agonists. Aduro’s anti-CD27 antibody, which was identified with its proprietary B-select monocolonal antibody technology, targets a functional epitope on CD27 demonstrating potent activation of the CD27 co-stimulatory pathway in pre-clinical studies. As a part of the worldwide license agreement, and in addition to payments received, including the $15 million up-front payment, Aduro is eligible to receive future development, commercial and net sales milestone payments. In addition, Aduro is eligible to receive royalties in the mid-single digits to low teens based on any net sales of the product, if it is approved for marketing.
Aduro Biotech, Inc. is an immunotherapy company focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of therapies that transform the treatment of challenging diseases. Aduro’s technology platforms, which are designed to harness the body’s natural immune system, are being investigated in cancer indications and have the potential to expand into autoimmune and infectious diseases. Aduro’s LADD technology platform is based on proprietary attenuated strains of Listeria that have been engineered to express tumor-associated antigens to induce specific and targeted immune responses. This platform is being developed as a treatment for multiple indications, including mesothelioma, ovarian, lung and prostate cancers. Additionally, a personalized form of LADD, or pLADD, is being developed utilizing tumor neoantigens that are specific to an individual patient’s tumor. Aduro’s STING Pathway Activator platform is designed to activate the STING receptor in immune cells, resulting in a potent tumor-specific immune response. ADU-S100 is the first STING Pathway Activator compound to enter the clinic and is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1 study in patients with cutaneously accessible metastatic solid tumors or lymphomas. Aduro’s B-select monoclonal antibody platform is comprised of a number of immune modulating assets in research and preclinical development, including BION-1301, an anti-APRIL antibody. Aduro is collaborating with leading global pharmaceutical companies to expand its products and technology platforms. For more information, please visit www.aduro.com.
Cautionary Note on Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include statements regarding our intentions or current expectations concerning, among other things, the potential for our anti-CD27 agonist antibody, the potential for future development, commercial and net sales milestone payments or royalties from Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA, the potential for our technology platforms, plans, the timing of our planned clinical trials and the potential for eventual regulatory approval of our product candidates. In some cases, you can identify these statements by forward-looking words such as “may,” “will,” “continue,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “could,” “project,” “expect,” “targeted” or the negative or plural of these words or similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results and events to differ materially from those anticipated, including, but not limited to, our history of net operating losses and uncertainty regarding our ability to achieve profitability, our ability to develop and commercialize our product candidates, our ability to use and expand our technology platforms to build a pipeline of product candidates, our ability to obtain and maintain regulatory approval of our product candidates, our ability to operate in a competitive industry and compete successfully against competitors that have greater resources than we do, our reliance on third parties, and our ability to obtain and adequately protect intellectual property rights for our product candidates. We discuss many of these risks in greater detail under the heading “Risk Factors” contained in our quarterly report on Form 10-Q for the quarter ended March 31, 2017, which is on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any forward-looking statements that we make in this press release speak only as of the date of this press release.
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