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GBT, Syros; Takeda, Cevance collaborates; IND application to ZN-c3

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Global Therapeutics and Syros Pharmaceuticals have teamed up to move forward to discover, develop and market novel Sickle cell disease and beta-thalassemia therapies. 

Inherited blood disorders affect millions of people worldwide. As per NIH, Sickle cell disease affects around 70,000 to 80,000 Americans, whereas, Beta-thalassemia, globally affects almost 288,000 people, and is comparatively rare in America. 

The collaboration will use Syros’s gene control platform for the identification of drugs and therapies inducing fetal haemoglobin, and provide the exclusive worldwide licence to Global Therapeutics for developing and commercialising the products. 

Global therapeutics, under the terms of the agreement, has agreed to pay Syros an amount of USD 20Million and fund pre-clinical trials led by Syros up to USD 40Million for at least three years. 

Moreover, upon receiving development, regulatory, commercialisation and sales-based milestones, Syros cam receive a hefty sum of up to USD 315 Million.

Cerevance has entered into a multi-year research deal with Takeda Pharmaceuticals for the development of novel therapies to treat gastrointestinal disorders.

Researchers from the companies have agreed upon identifying novel target proteins expressed in the central nervous system, and develop novel treatments approaches for Gastrointestinal disorders based on the targets. 

The transaction details of the agreement remain undisclosed; however, it is anticipated that Cerevance could capture more than USD 170 million in royalties and development, commercialization and sales milestones per target. The alliance will use Cerevance’s NETSseq platform to select, confirm and validate targets from a database rich in gene expression. The platform has the potential to identify the proteins that may get missed out selectively. Takeda will use the platform’s capability to expand the horizon its R&D for certain Gastrointestinal disorders.

Zentalis Pharmaceuticals has announced the clearance of Investigational New Drug (IND) application for its third oncology drug candidate, ZN-c3 by the FDA.

Recently Zentalis has raised USD 85 Million to fund its clinical trials of oncology drugs ZN-c5, and ZN-c3. Now the company has also announced the dosing of the first patient in Phase I/II clinical trial evaluating ZN-c3 in patients with advanced solid tumors.

ZN-c3 is an orally administered molecule DNA Damage Response (DDR) drug candidate designed to target WEE1 in cancers. WEE1 is a protein tyrosine kinase regulating cell cycle by serving as a checkpoint preventing DNA replication in the presence of DNA damage. 

Currently, there exist no FDA-approved WEE1 inhibitors. Zentalis is testing the potential of ZN-c3 and is running Phase 1/2 clinical trial as monotherapy and in combination with an FDA-approved PARP inhibitor. So far, the company has enrolled two patients in this clinical trial and expects to present the results of the trials in 2021.

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