Pfizer and Seattle Genetics, a clinical-stage biotechnology company focused on the development and commercialization of monoclonal antibody-based therapies for the treatment of cancer , have entered into a collaboration in which Pfizer will pay an upfront fee of $8 million for rights to utilize Seattle Genetics’ antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) technology with antibodies to a single oncology target.

“This collaboration reflects the increasing value of our ADC technology and strong interest in its potential among leaders in the drug development community,” said Eric L. Dobmeier, Chief Business Officer of Seattle Genetics. “We now have ten ongoing ADC collaborations, six collaborator ADCs using our technology are in clinical development, and several additional programs are advancing towards the clinic. We have generated more than $145 million from ADC licensing, and we have the potential to receive significant future milestones and royalties for ADCs developed by our collaborators.”

Under the terms of the agreement Pfizer is responsible for research, product development, manufacturing and commercialization of any ADC products under the collaboration. Seattle Genetics is eligible to receive from Pfizer over $200 million in progress-dependent milestones as well as royalties on worldwide net sales of any resulting ADC products. Seattle Genetics also will receive material supply and annual maintenance fees as well as research support payments for assistance provided to Pfizer under the collaboration.

Antibody-drug conjugate are monoclonal antibodies that selectively deliver potent anti-cancer agents to tumor cells. With over a decade of experience and knowledge in ADC innovation, Seattle Genetics has developed proprietary technology employing synthetic, highly potent cell-killing agents called auristatins (such as MMAE and MMAF) and stable linker systems that attach auristatin to the antibody. Seattle Genetics’ novel linker systems are designed to be stable in the bloodstream and release the potent cell-killing agent once inside targeted cancer cells. This approach is intended to spare non-targeted cells and thus reduce many of the toxic effects of traditional chemotherapy while enhancing the antitumor activity.

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