The firm – a US subsidiary of Tokyo, Japan-based pharma company Eisai Co Ltd – has several of its own monoclonal antibodies in preclinical and clinical development but will now be offering its conjugation and linker technologies to others looking to develop ADCs.
Morphotek’s proprietary ADC platform includes the REsidue-SPEcific Conjugation Technology (RESPECT) technology offering site-specific conjugation of cytotoxic payloads.
According to the firm, this platform offers high conjugation efficiency and is highly reproducible, but can also be used to attach two payloads with different mechanisms of action through the firm’s eribulin-linker technology.
Eribulin, an approved anticancer small molecule drug marketed by parent company Eisai as Halaven, has shown potent antitumor activity and good safety profile when used in conjugation with an antibody.
“Decades of expertise in antibody engineering and clinical development of biologics-based therapies, along with preclinical studies showing the potential of our new ADC formats, has enabled us to align these assets into a client-focused ADC business offering end-to-end services,” Morphotek CEO Nicholas Nicolaides said in a statement.
“We believe this new service provides an opportunity to build a win-win strategy by increasing internal value through leveraging our proprietary platforms and development know-how, and customer value by developing ADCs to their strategic targets.”