Iksuda Therapeutics (Iksuda), the next-generation Antibody Drug Conjugate (ADC) company, has announced it has signed a licensing agreement with Femtogenix Limited (FGX), the next-generation ADC payload company. As part of this agreement, Iksuda will use FGX’s sequence-selective DNA-interactive payload molecules to progress its lead ADC towards the clinic, with the aim of targeting difficult-to-treat solid tumors.
By harnessing FGX’s highly potent and broad-acting DNA mono-alkylating payloads in combination with its own PermaLink® conjugation platform, Iksuda aims to significantly improve the therapeutic index of its ADCs and further advance the current standard of care for solid tumor types, which can be resistant to treatment. The agreement marks another key step in the build-out of Iksuda’s ADC technology-suite and drug pipeline, from which it aims to progress multiple candidates towards first clinical studies in 2020.
Dr Dave Simpson, Chief Executive Officer, Iksuda, said: “This agreement is an exciting progression of our ADC pipeline as it maximizes potential for the greatest anti-cancer impact and enhanced therapeutic index, further underpinning our ambition to advance multiple ADCs to the clinic and treat the broadest patient population possible.”
Dr Chris Keightley, Chief Executive Officer, Femtogenix, said: “We are pleased to be working with Iksuda to further validate the clinical potential of our payloads, which should provide improved efficacy and safety in comparison to those currently in the clinic. We have developed a wide range of easily conjugated payloads with novel mechanisms of action and potency levels, and these are available for licensing. In particular, we are developing payloads that can recognize and bind to transcription factor recognition site profiles within the genome. Such profiles are characteristic of specific tumor types, and this allows FGX to develop payloads with reduced toxicity and enhanced target specificity.”