Dynavax Receives Milestone from AstraZeneca
News Sep 23, 2008
Dynavax Technologies, Inc. has announced receipt of a $4.5 million milestone payment from its partner AstraZeneca AB for the nomination of candidate drug AZD1419 for the treatment of asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD).
As part of this potential $136 million development and commercialization collaboration, AstraZeneca and Dynavax have initiated Investigational New Drug (IND) enabling studies with AZD1419 and plan to begin phase 1 clinical development in 2009.
AZD1419 represents a new strategy for the treatment of allergic respiratory diseases such as asthma. AZD1419 is designed to modify the course of these diseases by reprogramming the immune response to multiple allergens.
AZD1419 is based on Dynavax’s proprietary second-generation immunostimulatory sequences (ISS), which are short DNA sequences that specifically target Toll-Like Receptor 9 (TLR9) to stimulate the innate immune response.
"This collaboration brings together Dynavax’s novel therapeutic approach with AstraZeneca’s broad experience in respiratory diseases to discover and develop innovative products for patients with these diseases," commented Claude Bertrand, Global Vice President Respiratory and Inflammation Research at AstraZeneca. “AZD1419 has the potential to expand and strengthen our value-added product portfolio in this disease field.”
“Working together, we hope to develop new therapeutic options for patients with asthma and COPD, which remain major health challenges and significant unmet medical needs,” commented Robert Coffman, Ph.D., Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer of Dynavax Technologies. “Our pre-clinical data strongly support the potential of our novel TLR9 agonist products to produce durable changes in the allergic responses responsible for asthma.”