MorphoSys and Roche Expand Therapeutic Antibody Partnership
Martinsried/Munich, Germany, and Basel, Switzerland, March 1, 2006, MorphoSys AG (Frankfurt: MOR; Prime Standard Segment, TecDAX) and Roche today announced a collaboration to develop new therapeutic antibodies in oncology. Expanding on a September 2000 relationship in Alzheimer’s disease, Roche will elect new target molecules against which MorphoSys will generate antibodies using its proprietary HuCAL GOLD® technology.
“Extending our active alliance shows a positive and constructive working relationship between Roche and MorphoSys,” said Peter Hug, Roche’s Global Head of Pharma Partnering. “We are pleased to collaborate with a proven partner in a new therapeutic area.”
“Expanding our existing partnerships is a high priority for us,” commented Dr. Simon Moroney, Chief Executive Officer of MorphoSys. “Roche’s commitment to initiating new therapeutic antibody programs with MorphoSys is a clear vote of confidence from an existing partner and validation of the utility of our technology in producing potential drugs.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Roche and MorphoSys will collaborate on two new antibody programs in oncology. Roche will be responsible for preclinical and clinical development as well as subsequent marketing of all resulting products. MorphoSys will receive an upfront payment and may receive additional research funding and future event payments totaling more than €10 million per program, plus potential royalties.
MorphoSys develops and applies innovative technologies for the production of synthetic antibodies, which accelerate drug discovery and target characterization. Founded in 1992, the Company’’s proprietary Human Combinatorial Antibody Library (HuCAL®) technology is used by researchers worldwide for human antibody generation. The Company currently has licensing agreements and/or research collaborations with Bayer (Berkeley, California/USA), Boehringer Ingelheim (Ingelheim, Germany), Bristol-Myers Squibb (New Jersey/USA), Centocor Inc. (Malvern, Pennsylvania/USA), GPC Biotech AG (Munich/Germany), Hoffmann-La Roche AG (Basel/Switzerland), ImmunoGen Inc. (Cambridge, Massachusetts/USA), Merck & Co., Inc. (Whitehouse Station, New Jersey/USA), Novartis AG (Basel, Switzerland), Novoplant GmbH (Gatersleben, Germany), Pfizer Inc. (Delaware/USA), ProChon Biotech Ltd. (Rehovot/Israel), Schering AG (Berlin/Germany), Shionogi & Co., Ltd. (Osaka/Japan), Xoma Ltd. (Berkeley, California/USA) and others. Additionally, MorphoSys is active in the antibody research market through its Antibodies by Design business unit. Antibodies by Design was founded in 2003 for the purpose of exploiting the MorphoSys non-therapeutic antibody markets. MorphoSys’ activities in the research antibody segment were significantly strengthened through the acquisition of the U.K. and U.S.-based
Biogenesis Group in January 2005 and Serotec Group in 2006. For further information please visit the corporate website at: http://www.morphosys.com/.
About Roche as a Partner:
Roche is a valued partner to more than 50 companies worldwide. Over the past two years, Roche has led the pharmaceutical industry in the number of clinical compound deals signed. In 2005, Roche entered into nine partnerships to jointly develop products for optimal patient benefit and value. Partnerships continue to strengthen Roche’s positions in oncology, virology, transplantation, and primary care. Roche’s partnering culture encourages innovation through a unique pairing of collaboration and autonomy.
Statements included in this press release which are not historical in nature are intended to be, and are hereby identified as, “forward-looking statements” for purposes of the safe harbour provided by Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements may be identified by words including “anticipates”, “believes”, “intends”, “estimates”, “expects” and similar expressions. The company cautions readers that forward-looking statements, including without limitation those relating to the company’s future operations and business prospects, are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Factors that may affect future operations and business prospects include, but are not limited to, clinical and scientific results and developments concerning corporate collaborations and the company’s proprietary rights and other factors described in the prospectus relating to the company’s recent public offering.
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