New therapy for Specialised Therapeutics

Company News

Another deal for Specialised Therapeutics, with the Melbourne-based company signing an exclusive license agreement with Aeterna Zentaris for Australian and New Zealand rights to its lead investigational anti-cancer compound, ZOPTREX (zoptarelin doxorubicin).

ZOPTREX, a novel synthetic peptide carrier linked to doxorubicin, is currently undergoing a fully-enrolled Phase 3 clinical trial to evaluate the compound in endometrial cancer.

The trial is expected to be completed in 2016 with a potental regulatory submission in the first half of next year.

Under the agreement, Aeterna Zentaris will be entitled to receive a non-refundable upfront payment from Specialised Therapeutics, which will also make agreed additional payments based on regulatory and commercial milestones, as well as double-digit royalties on future net sales of ZOPTREX in Australia and New Zealand.

“All results to date suggest ZOPTREX is a potent new compound and we look forward to collaborating closely with Aeterna Zentaris to maximise its full potential in our key markets,” said Specialised Therapeutics CEO, Carlo Montagner.

Specialised Therapeutics has grown quickly in recent years on the back of a growing portfolio, headlined by the PBS-listed ABRAXANE (nab-paclitaxel) for the treatment of pancreatic cancer.

David Dodd, President and CEO of Aeterna Zentaris, said, “I am very pleased that we have now concluded four agreements for the commercial rights to ZOPTREX, if approved, outside the United States. We believe that the interest in ZOPTREX expressed by our licensees supports our view that ZOPTREX, if it is approved by the FDA for its initial indication, could be an important treatment option for women with the most severe form of endometrial cancer. We are particularly pleased to have a company of the caliber of STA as a licensee. STA enjoys the highest reputation in its markets and, with its existing portfolio of oncology products, it has the capability to position ZOPTREX very well in the market.”