Amgen and CytomX Therapeutics Inc. have entered into a strategic collaboration in immuno-oncology. The companies will co-develop a CytomX Probody T-cell engaging bispecific against the Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor (EGFR), a highly validated oncology target expressed on multiple human cancer types.
Probody T-cell engaging bispecifics are antibody constructs capable of directing cytotoxic T-cells in tumor microenvironments, the companies explain. In preclinical studies, CytomX's Probody versions of EGFRxCD3 bispecific therapeutics induced tumor regressions and increased the therapeutic window for this high potential cancer target.
"EGFR is a particularly compelling target on which to employ the CytomX Probody platform given its potential to localize activity within tumors while limiting potential toxicity," said Sean E. Harper, M.D., executive vice president of research and development at Amgen.
Amgen says it will make an upfront payment of $40 million and purchase $20 million of CytomX common stock. CytomX will be eligible to receive up to $455 million in development, regulatory and commercial milestones for the EGFR program. Amgen will also receive worldwide rights to develop and commercialize up to three additional, undisclosed targets. Should Amgen pursue all of these targets, CytomX will be eligible to receive up to $950 million in additional upfront and milestone payments and high single-digit to mid-double digit royalty payments on any resulting products.