GAITHERSBURG, Md., Sept 26, 2005 /PRNewswire-FirstCall via COMTEX News Network/ -- MedImmune, Inc.
(Nasdaq: MEDI) announced today that it has entered into a licensing and
collaboration agreement with Georgetown University for the development of
monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) targeting anaplastic lymphoma kinase (ALK), a
member of the insulin receptor family of tyrosine kinases. ALK is believed to
play an important role in the growth of solid tumors including those
associated with prostate, colon and lung cancers.
"Over the last several years, MedImmune has strategically and
substantially added to its portfolio of promising targets and technologies,
especially in the area of oncology," said Dr. Peter Kiener, senior vice
president, research. "The addition of the ALK preclinical program further
leverages our growing expertise in receptor tyrosine kinases. Since 2001,
MedImmune has been working on developing a library of antibodies targeting the
largest subfamily of receptor tyrosine kinases, the Eph kinases, the first of
which we hope to take into the clinic in 2006. We look forward to applying
what we have learned to date to advancing MAbs targeting ALK."
"Georgetown University is delighted to strengthen its collaborative
relationship with MedImmune in the cancer therapeutic field," said Martin
Mullins, vice president, technology licensing, Georgetown University.
Under the terms of the agreement, MedImmune will receive exclusive
worldwide rights to develop oncology therapies using MAbs targeting ALK.
MedImmune will be responsible for the clinical development and
commercialization of any resulting products. Georgetown University will
receive an upfront payment as well as potential development milestone payments
and royalties on future marketed products. The organizations will also
participate in an ongoing research collaboration as part of the agreement.
ALK is a receptor tyrosine kinase that is found at high levels in cancer
cells, where it is believed to play an important role in tumor cell growth and
survival. Over-expression of ALK and its ligand, pleiotrophin (PTN), has been
confirmed in numerous cancer types, including prostate, breast, colon, lung,
pancreatic and ovarian cancers. Research has shown that high levels of PTN are
associated with lower survival rates, and in vivo study results suggest that
anti-ALK antibodies may potentially reduce tumor growth and survival.
MedImmune strives to provide better medicines to patients, new medical
options for physicians, rewarding careers to employees, and increased value to
shareholders. Dedicated to advancing science and medicine to help people live
better lives, the company is focused on the areas of infectious diseases,
cancer and inflammatory diseases. With approximately 2,000 employees
worldwide, MedImmune is headquartered in Maryland. For more information, visit
This announcement may contain, in addition to historical information,
certain forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, in
particular, related to the research and development of antibodies targeting
ALK. Such statements reflect management's current views and are based on
certain assumptions about the success of this program. Actual results could
differ materially from those currently anticipated as a result of a number of
factors, including risks and uncertainties discussed in MedImmune's filings
with the SEC. MedImmune is developing ALK-related product candidates for
potential future marketing. There can be no assurance that such development
efforts will succeed, that such products will receive required regulatory
clearance or that, even if such regulatory clearance were received, such
products would ultimately achieve commercial success.
This press release can be found on MedImmune's website at
http://www.medimmune.com in the box marked "News" or with the archived press
releases on the Investor Summary page.
SOURCE MedImmune, Inc.
Media: Kate Barrett, +1-301-398-4320, or Investors: Peter Vozzo, +1-301-398-4358,
both of MedImmune, Inc.