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Daiichi Sankyo, Max Planck Innovation and Lead Discovery Center Announce Cancer Research Collaboration

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July 11, 2017

Tokyo, Japan, Basking Ridge, NJ and Dortmund, Germany – (July 11, 2017) – Daiichi Sankyo Co., Limited (hereafter, Daiichi Sankyo), Max Planck Innovation GmbH and the Lead Discovery Center GmbH have signed an agreement providing Daiichi Sankyo with the option to receive the exclusive rights to a new lead compound for the treatment of cancer to be discovered and developed at the Lead Discovery Center.

This new partnership builds on biology insights in the field of transcriptional regulation from the work of Prof. Matthias Geyer at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Physiology in Dortmund and the Research Center caesar (Center of Advanced European Studies and Research) in Bonn, Germany. Combined with the Lead Discovery Center’s strong drug discovery expertise in the design of highly selective kinase inhibitors, Daiichi Sankyo, Max Planck researchers and the Lead Discovery Center will now closely cooperate to further optimize these novel compounds that target cancer cell transcription and proliferation.

Daiichi Sankyo together with the Max Planck Society, supported by Max Planck Foundation, will jointly fund the respective drug discovery efforts at the Lead Discovery Center. Once the project has achieved proof-of-concept in relevant in vivo models, Daiichi Sankyo has the exclusive rights to license the program at pre-defined terms for subsequent preclinical and clinical development. The agreement includes an upfront payment as well as development and sales milestones plus royalties. The licensing revenues will be shared between Max Planck Society, the Lead Discovery Center and all contributing researchers and institutions.

“The Lead Discovery Center is our prime partner for innovative drug discovery projects and developing novel compounds with a high therapeutic potential from the Max Planck Institutes. This agreement with Daiichi Sankyo, a recognized leader in the development and supply of innovative pharmaceutical products, again shows the high quality of research projects driven at the Max Planck laboratories. Moreover, the agreement is a great opportunity to advance the research findings into pharmaceutical development, providing potential new treatment options for patients with cancer,” according to Dr. Matthias Stein-Gerlach, patent and licensing manager at Max Planck Innovation, Max Planck Society´s technology transfer organization.

“This project collaboration and option agreement is building on the excellent experiences that Daiichi Sankyo and the Lead Discovery Center previously made from a discovery alliance that started in 2014, as well as close ties and many interactions between Daiichi Sankyo and the Max Planck Society, such as the collaboration with the Axel Ullrich lab. Max Planck Innovation has been instrumental to close this partnership,” adds Dr. Bert Klebl, Managing Director and CSO at the Lead Discovery Center.

It is a great pleasure for us to start this research collaboration with Max Planck Innovation and the Lead Discovery Center to further generate innovation for our cancer drug discovery efforts,” said Antoine Yver, MD, MSc, Executive Vice President and Global Head of Oncology Research and Development, Daiichi Sankyo. “We are excited about the integration of Max Planck Society’s high quality science and the Lead Discovery Center’s expertise in lead discovery into Daiichi Sankyo’s drug research and development platform.

Daiichi Sankyo, the Lead Discovery Center and the Max Planck Society aim to further expand their collaboration into additional programs in the future.

About Max Planck Innovation

Max Planck Innovation is responsible for the technology transfer of the Max Planck Society and, as such, serves as a link between industry and basic research. With its interdisciplinary team it advises and supports scientists in evaluating their inventions, filing patents, and founding companies. Max Planck Innovation offers the industry unique access to the innovations of the Max Planck Institutes, and therefore performs an important task: the transfer of basic research results into products, which contributes to economic and social progress. Further information at: www.max-planck-innovation.de

About the Lead Discovery Center

The Lead Discovery Center was established in 2008 by the technology transfer organization Max Planck Innovation, as a novel approach to capitalize on the potential of excellent basic research for the discovery of new therapies for diseases with high medical need. The Lead Discovery Center takes on promising early-stage projects from academia and transforms them into innovative pharmaceutical leads that reach initial proof-of-concept in animals. In close collaboration with high-profile partners from academia and industry, the Lead Discovery Center is building a strong and growing portfolio of small molecule leads with exceptional medical and commercial potential.

The Lead Discovery Center sustains a preferred partnership with the Max Planck Society and has formed alliances with AstraZeneca, Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Merck KGaA, Daiichi Sankyo, Qurient, Johnson & Johnson Innovation, Roche and Sotio as well as leading translational drug discovery centers around the globe. Further information at: www.lead-discovery.de

About Daiichi Sankyo Cancer Enterprise

The vision of Daiichi Sankyo Cancer Enterprise is to leverage our world-class, innovative science and push beyond traditional thinking in order to create meaningful treatments for patients with cancer. We are dedicated to transforming science into value for patients, and this sense of obligation informs everything we do. Anchored by our Antibody Drug Conjugate (ADC) and Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) Franchises, our cancer pipeline includes more than 20 small molecules, monoclonal antibodies and ADCs stemming from our powerful research engines: our two laboratories for biologic/immuno-oncology and small molecules in Japan, and Plexxikon Inc., our small molecule structure-guided R&D center in Berkeley, CA. Compounds in development include: quizartinib, an oral FLT3 inhibitor, for newly-diagnosed and relapsed/refractory AML with FLT3-ITD mutations; DS-8201, an ADC for HER2-expressing breast and gastric cancer, and other HER2-expressing solid tumors; and pexidartinib, an oral CSF-1R inhibitor, for tenosynovial giant cell tumor (TGCT), which is also being explored in a range of solid tumors in combination with the anti-PD1 immunotherapy pembrolizumab. For more information, please visit: www.DSCancerEnterprise.com

About Daiichi Sankyo

Daiichi Sankyo Group is dedicated to the creation and supply of innovative pharmaceutical products to address diversified, unmet medical needs of patients in both mature and emerging markets. With over 100 years of scientific expertise and a presence in more than 20 countries, Daiichi Sankyo and its 15,000 employees around the world draw upon a rich legacy of innovation and a robust pipeline of promising new medicines to help people. In addition to a strong portfolio of medicines for hypertension and thrombotic disorders, under the Group’s 2025 Vision to become a “Global Pharma Innovator with a Competitive Advantage in Oncology,” Daiichi Sankyo research and development is primarily focused on bringing forth novel therapies in oncology, including immuno-oncology, with additional focus on new horizon areas, such as pain management, neurodegenerative diseases, heart and kidney diseases, and other rare diseases. For more information, please visit: www.daiichisankyo.com.  Daiichi Sankyo, Inc. headquartered in Basking Ridge, New Jersey, is a member of the Daiichi Sankyo Group. For more information on Daiichi Sankyo, Inc., please visit: www.dsi.com

Refer to

Jennifer Brennan
Daiichi Sankyo, Inc.
jbrennan2@dsi.com
+1 908 992 6631 (office)
+1 201 709 9309 (mobile)

Thomas Hegendoerfer
Lead Discovery Center GmbH
hegendoerfer@lead-discovery.de
+49 231 9742 7002

Markus Berninger Max Planck Innovation GmbH
berninger@max-planck-innovation.de
+49 89 2909 1930


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