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Merck to Advance Bispecific Antibody Drug Candidate Developed Using Zymeworks’ Azymetric™ Platform into Preclinical Development

By September 29, 2017No Comments

Zymeworks Inc., a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company dedicated to the discovery, development and commercialization of next-generation bispecific and multifunctional biotherapeutics, today announced that Merck (known as MSD outside the US and Canada) has provided formal notification of their plans to advance a bispecific drug candidate into preclinical development. The drug candidate was developed by Merck, through a subsidiary, in collaboration with Zymeworks using Zymeworks’ proprietary Azymetric™ and EFECT™ platforms as part of an existing Research and License Agreement between the two companies.

“We are excited that another one of our collaborators will be advancing a therapeutic candidate built on the Azymetric™ platform into preclinical development,” said Dr. Ali Tehrani, President and CEO of Zymeworks. “The Azymetric™ platform has generated clinical validation through Zymeworks’ wholly-owned lead clinical program, ZW25, and is on track to be further validated in the clinic through its collaborations with Merck and others as Zymeworks’ strategic partners continue to make progress.”

Under the terms of the Research and License Agreement, Zymeworks has granted Merck a worldwide, royalty-bearing license to research, develop and commercialize certain bispecific therapeutic candidates toward Merck’s therapeutic targets. For this program, Zymeworks could upon further success of the therapeutic candidate receive development and commercial milestone payments as well as tiered royalties on product sales.