Bristol-Myers Squibb and Exelixis Enter Global Collaboration on Two Cancer Programs
News Dec 15, 2008
Bristol-Myers Squibb Company and Exelixis, Inc. has announced a global collaboration covering two novel molecules for cancer with their associated development programs: Exelixis’ XL184, a small molecule inhibitor of MET, VEGFR2 and RET, which is currently in Phase III development for medullary thyroid cancer; and Exelixis’ XL281, a small molecule inhibitor of RAF kinase, which is currently in Phase I development for the treatment of patients with advanced solid tumor malignancies.
Under the terms of the collaboration, Bristol-Myers Squibb agreed to pay Exelixis an upfront cash payment of $195 million for the development and commercialization rights to both programs and to make additional license payments of $45 million in 2009.
The companies have agreed to co-develop XL184. Exelixis will have the option to co-promote XL184 in the United States. The companies will share worldwide development costs and commercial profits on XL184 in the United States.
Exelixis will be eligible to receive sales performance milestones of up to $150 million and double-digit royalties on sales outside the United States. The clinical development of XL184 will be directed by a joint committee. It is anticipated that Exelixis will conduct a significant portion of clinical development activities through 2010.
Exelixis may opt out of the co-development of XL184, in which case Exelixis would instead be eligible to receive development and regulatory milestones of up to $295 million, double-digit royalties on XL184 product sales worldwide, and sales performance milestones.
Bristol-Myers Squibb will receive an exclusive worldwide license to develop and commercialize XL281 and will be responsible for funding all future development. Exelixis is eligible for development and regulatory milestones of up to $315 million, sales performance milestones of up to $150 million and double-digit royalties on worldwide sales of XL281.
“For nearly a decade, the foundation for our close collaborations with Exelixis has been a commitment to discover and develop new medicines to help patients prevail over serious disease,” said Elliott Sigal, M.D., Ph.D., executive vice president, chief scientific officer, and president, Research and Development of Bristol-Myers Squibb.
“XL184 and XL281 represent significant new opportunities to inhibit the progression of many different tumor types. This agreement represents the next pearl in our on-going String of Pearls initiative, designed to accelerate our company’s strategy to transform into a BioPharma leader by blending external scientific innovation with our own internal research and development expertise. Together with Exelixis, we intend to fully explore how these compounds can potentially extend the treatment options of patients with cancer."
XL184 provides a novel approach to the treatment of a variety of solid tumors where signaling through MET, VEGFR2 or RET plays an important role in dysregulated tumor growth and progression. XL184 has recently begun a Phase III clinical trial in medullary thyroid cancer, a disease in which RET mutations are found in a large proportion of patients.
In addition, clinical trials to exploit the MET and VEGFR2 targeting of XL184 are ongoing in patients with non-small cell lung cancer and glioblastoma. Preclinically, XL184 also exhibits inhibitory activity for MET and VEGFR2 in a variety of breast, colon and brain tumor models.