Janssen and Zymeworks become partners in drug development

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Zymeworks Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery, development and commercialization of next-generation multifunctional biotherapeutics, headquartered in Canada, announced it has executed a licensing agreement with Janssen Biotech, Inc., one of the Janssen Pharmaceutical Companies of Johnson & Johnson. The deal was facilitated by Johnson & Johnson Innovation.

Under the terms of the licensing agreement, Zymeworks will provide Janssen with a worldwide, royalty-bearing license to research, develop, and commercialize up to six bispecific antibodies directed to Janssen therapeutic targets using Zymeworks’ Azymetric™ and EFECT™ platforms. Janssen will be responsible for all research, development, and commercial activities under the licensing agreement. Zymeworks will receive an upfront payment of $50 million and is eligible to potentially receive up to $282 million in development and up to $1.12 billion in commercial milestone payments, and tiered royalties on potential sales. Janssen also has the option to develop two additional bispecific programs under the agreement subject to a future option payment.

“We are very pleased to be partnering with Janssen and their world-class scientists,” said Dr. Ali Tehrani, President and CEO of Zymeworks. “This marks our sixth major pharmaceutical partnership and the first since our wholly-owned bispecific product candidate ZW25, which is enabled with the Azymetric™ platform, entered clinical trials. The proceeds from this collaboration will be primarily used to fund the clinical advancement of ZW25, as well as the advancement of our preclinical programs into the clinic.”

SOURCE: zymeworks
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