AstraZeneca has paid a $4.5 million milestone payment to Australian company Starpharma (ASX:SPL) following the successful dosing of the first patient in the phase 1 clinical trial of AZD0466 (DEP Bcl2/xL conjugate) late last year.
The longstanding deal between the two companies involves the development of AstraZeneca medicines with Starpharma's Dendrimer Enhanced Product (DEP) drug delivery platform. The platform is designed to enhance the properties of other therapies.
Starpharma is eligible to receive development, launch and sales milestones of up to US$124 million, plus tiered royalties on net sales for this initial product (AZD0466), and US$93.3 million for each subsequent qualifying product.
The trial that triggered the milestone is being conducted at multiple sites in the US and is recruiting patients with a range of cancers.
AstraZeneca describes AZD0466 as having the potential to be a ‘best-in-class’ agent in this field with a broad opportunity in solid and blood cancers due to its ability to target both the Bcl2 and Bcl/xL1 proteins.