Aim to bring together complementary expertise to identify and develop potential cancer treatments
Sanofi is to work with Germany's Evotec and Apeiron Biologics based in Vienna, Austria, to discover and develop small molecule-based immuno-oncology therapies to treat solid and haematological cancers by enhancing the anti-tumour activity of the human immune system.
Under the terms of the agreement, Sanofi will have sole responsibility for all development, regulatory, commercial and manufacturing activities of the products resulting from the collaboration.
The French drugmaker will support two years of funding for Evotec and Apeiron to conduct the research programme, which will include potential early success milestone payments. Upon continuation, as decided by Sanofi, Evotec will be entitled to receive further development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments, which could total more than EUR200m, and royalties on net sales.
Based on Evotec's technological expertise and Apeiron Biologics' experience with immunology, the treatments are expected to complement currently available checkpoint inhibitors. The collaboration is based on the initial successful outcome of a phenotypic high throughput screen of potential compounds for development that was commissioned by Apeiron Biologics and conducted by Evotec. Under the collaboration, Sanofi has the option of screening its own compound libraries to identify new small molecule candidates for development.