Oncodesign and UCB enter into a research collaboration for the early development of new therapeutic agents in neurodegenerative diseases

The partnership is based on Oncodesign’s Nanocyclix(R) technology platform for next generation kinase inhibitors and UCB’s expertise in neurology.

Oncodesign, a drug discovery company and oncology pharmacology service provider, announces today that it has entered into a research collaboration and exclusive license option with UCB, a global biopharmaceutical leader specialised in neurology and immunology. The collaboration will leverage the respective expertise of Oncodesign and UCB to bring innovative therapeutic solutions to patients suffering from neurodegenerative disorders. Oncodesign will apply its Nanocyclix technology on a kinase target selected by UCB with the aim of discovering potent and selective inhibitors that cross the blood brain barrier.

Oncodesign’s Nanocyclix technology is a proprietary medicinal chemistry platform based on small molecule macrocyclisation that gives access to potent and highly selective kinase inhibitors with attractive physicochemical and ADME properties. Oncodesign has identified Nanocyclix leads against a broad range of known and unexplored kinases with potential in different therapeutic areas and is engaged in multiple collaborations with pharmaceutical partners.

“This collaboration with UCB further establishes Oncodesign as a major player in the drug discovery field. It strengthens our strategy of early partnering with leading international pharmaceutical companies in fields outside of oncology. This, together with our internal focus on innovative programs against cancer, constitutes a strong basis for addressing major unmet needs in patients and value creation,” said Philippe Genne, Ph.D., chairman and chief executive officer of Oncodesign.

“We are very excited to partner with UCB for the first time on this exclusive research collaboration and license option in the field of neurodegenerative disorders, an area with high unmet needs for a large patient population. This new collaboration demonstrates the growing interest that the pharmaceutical industry has in our Nanocyclix technology. This allows us to discover innovative inhibitors for kinases that are otherwise difficult to address,” said Jan Hoflack, Ph.D., chief scientific officer and head of Oncodesign’s discovery activities.

About the agreement

Under the terms of the agreement, UCB is granted an exclusive option to license the joint program (with worldwide development and commercialization rights), upon successfully reaching certain discovery milestones. Oncodesign is entitled to funding for the program’s research activities, and upon exercise of the license option, a program access fee and additional research, development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments for the development of molecules in two or more indications, and tiered royalties on net sales.

About Oncodesign

Founded in 1995 and headed by Dr. Philippe Genne, Oncodesign(R) is a pioneer in the preclinical assessment of anti-cancer therapies. Oncodesign’s mission consists of discovering effective therapies against cancer and other important diseases. Its scientific expertise in pharmacology, imaging and medicinal chemistry, in addition to strong project management skills, support the company’s two strategic activities of experimentation and discovery.

Oncodesign develops a unique and innovative translational research approach in risk-sharing partnerships with pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies.

For more information, see: http://www.oncodesign.com.

About UCB

UCB, Brussels, Belgium is a global biopharmaceutical company focused on the discovery and development of innovative medicines and solutions to transform the lives of people living with severe diseases of the immune system or of the central nervous system. With 9,000 people in approximately 40 countries, the company generated revenue of EUR 3.4 billion in 2012. UCB is listed on Euronext Brussels.

For more information, see: http://www.ucb.com