Melbourne-based CTx signs new collaboration with Pfizer

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Melbourne-headquartered Cancer Therapeutics CRC (CTx) has announced a two-year research collaboration and license agreement with Pfizer.

Under the terms of the agreement, Pfizer will gain the rights to two novel pre-clinical cancer programs and CTx will receive a US$14.2 million (~A$20 million) upfront payment, up to a potential US$460 million (A$648 million) in development and sales milestones, as well as royalties on product sales if the program reaches commercialisation.

The two programs target proteins are known to play an important role in driving the growth of both solid and blood cancers.

CTx is an oncology-focused small molecule drug discovery and early development biotechnology group, established under the Australian government’s Cooperative Research Centre initiative.

CTx’s partnership model leverages the capabilities and expertise of its industry participants with those of a number of Australia’s pre-eminent medical research institutes and universities.

According to Brett Carter, CEO of CTx, “We are very excited to work with a company of Pfizer’s calibre on the progression of these programs. This deal, together with the three prior deals for CTX technology, has the potential to return a billion dollars to Australia. Funds that will help support the biomedical sector and that can be ploughed into new drug discovery programs; providing opportunities for the world-class team we have developed, and potentially leading to the delivery of new treatments for patients and economic benefits for the nation.”

Dr Robert Abraham, senior vice president and group head of Pfizer’s Oncology Research and Development Group, said: “We are constantly searching the globe for the best science that has the potential to change the way we can treat people with cancer in the future. What we have found at CTx with these two chromatin modifying enzyme targets are very promising, differentiated programs that have the potential to provide new treatment options for patients.”