VLST Corporation, a Seattle-based biotechnology company focused on the development of therapeutics for cancer and autoimmune and inflammatory disorders, today announced an in-licensing agreement with Pfizer Inc. for an anti-CD40 monoclonal antibody.
CP-870,893 is a potent CD40 agonist that has been evaluated in a number of preclinical and clinical trials to date. These studies have determined the safety profile, pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamic parameters of CD40-mediated immune activation as well as the maximum tolerated dose of the antibody. VLST plans to advance this compound into efficacy studies in an oncology setting. VLST is currently evaluating multiple clinical opportunities. Under the terms of the agreement, Pfizer will retain co-exclusive rights to CP-870,893 in the oncology vaccine field.
"We are excited to in-license this promising compound. With the transfer of the IND from Pfizer, we will accelerate the development of our clinical strategy and expand our focus in immunotherapy to include oncology," said Martin Simonetti, President and Chief Executive Officer of VLST. "Our recent financing will help support our Phase 2 clinical efforts."
"This agreement with VLST is yet another example of how Pfizer is executing against its portfolio management goals in oncology while finding a positive way forward for those compounds leaving our pipeline," said Garry Nicholson, President and General Manager of Pfizer Oncology. "VLST's expertise in immunotherapy makes the company a strong partner to continue the development of this compound and potentially deliver a new therapy to patients with cancer."
VLST completed a tranche of the Series B financing of $5 million in June 2012. The financing was led by ARCH Venture Partners and included OVP Venture Partners, WRF Capital and Versant Ventures.