Debiopharm and Genome & Company Join Forces to Create New Highly Specific Therapies For Cancer Patients

Korean and Swiss based companies leverage their oncology expertise to initiate a research collaboration to formulate novel antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) candidates

Lausanne, Switzerland and Seongnam-si Gyeonggi-do, Republic of Korea – February 25, 2020 Genome & Company (314130, CEO: Jisoo Pae, Hansoo Park), a global leading immuno-oncology firm, and Debiopharm, a Swiss-based biopharmaceutical company specializing in oncology and infectious diseases, today announced having entered into a research collaboration for the discovery of innovative cancer therapies in the expanding antibody-drug conjugates (ADC) class. This research collaboration has been undertaken with the goal of further exploiting this new therapeutic class, potentially offering cancer patients future treatments that efficiently target cancer cells while avoiding impact on healthy tissues.

The collaboration between the two companies is built on the rapidly expanding Genome & Company’s novel target-based oncology drug pipeline and Debiopharm’s proven track record in oncology. The Swiss company has developed two standards of care in colorectal cancer (oxaliplatin) and in prostate cancer (triptorelin).

Despite ongoing advances in oncology, cancer remains one of the leading causes of death worldwide. Standard-of-care systemic therapies, such as chemotherapy, have benefited cancer patients by killing existing malignant cells, while targeted therapies, such as ADCs, offer new ways of stopping new cancer growth by affecting the genes and proteins necessary for tumor cell survival and replication. In order to accelerate the discovery of innovative tumor-specific treatments, both specialty companies are combining their individual expertise for the development of an optimal ADC candidate based on three important criteria: the target, the cytotoxic payload, and the linker. Specifically, Genome & Company, having generated several antibodies against novel oncology targets discovered based on its own drug development platform, GNOCLE™ and will now be armed with Debiopharm’s Multilink™ technology to deliver cytotoxic payloads to tumor cells. Multilink™ is a unique and innovative technology in that it allows the loading of multiple and different payloads on an antibody. With Debiopharm, Genome & Company will conduct follow-up discussions on the clinical development and the licensing of newly discovered ADC candidates.

“This research collaboration has shown that the Genome & Company has a global level of research and development capability for novel target-based oncology drugs (antibodies) in addition to microbiome therapeutics. We will try to provide novel treatments to cancer patients through active open innovation strategies for the optimal development of novel drugs in the future.”
– Jisoo Pae, CEO of Genome & Company

“The collaboration between Genome & Company and Debiopharm is synergizing both our companies’ technology assets and know-how to generate new Antibody Drug Conjugate products. Our aim is to constantly explore different paths to bring novel treatment options to patients with unmet medical needs”.
– Cédric Sager, CEO of Debiopharm’s development and production facility.

About the companies’ ADC technology

Genome & Company has discovered novel targets and antibody candidates on its own drug discovery platform (GNOCLE™). Debiopharm has developed several proprietary ADC technology platforms, Multilink™ a cleavable linker-drug -platform enabling high drug-to-antibody ratio (DAR) ADC development and AbYlink™ a technology allowing the covalent Fc-selective attachment of cargos (cytotoxic drugs, radioactive agents or fluorophores) to antibodies. Debiopharm has a development pipeline of more than 10 programs in bacterial infections and oncology, including naratuximab emtansine (Debio 1562), an ADC targeting CD37.

Genome & Company Introduction

Since its establishment in 2015, Genome & Company has been a global leader in micro-biome immunologic drugs and is developing next-generation innovative drugs in the field of immuno-cancer drugs such as immuno-cancer micro-biome drugs and novel target immune-gateway inhibitors. With the acquisition of Scioto Bioscience in the US in August this year, we are taking the lead in the market to become a global micro-biome healthcare group capable of R&D to production, expanding a novel global pipeline for micro-biome treatments for brain diseases.

About Debiopharm

Debiopharm develops, manufactures, and invests in innovative therapies and technologies that respond to high unmet medical needs in oncology and bacterial infections. For more than 35 years, our development and production facility based in Martigny (VS, Switzerland) has been a world leader in polylactic-co-glycolic acid (PLGA)-based injectable, sustained-release technology used for Decapeptyl®, an injectable controlled-release formulation of triptorelin – a gonadotropin releasing hormone (GnRH) agonist analogue. Today, Debiopharm is developing several enabling technologies for drug targeting such as Multlink™, a multipayload linker for ADC, and AbYlink™, an antibody conjugation platform.

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