11-11-2008: BTG plc announced it has granted worldwide rights to Onyx Pharmaceuticals, Inc. to develop and commercialise BTG’s novel anticancer compound, BGC 945. Under the terms of the agreement, BTG will receive an upfront payment of $13m and has the potential to receive development milestone payments of up to $72m plus additional payments of up to $235m relating to product approval and achievement of commercial milestones. BTG will also receive a royalty on any future sales worldwide.
BTG has progressed BGC 945 into late-stage preclinical development in collaboration with The Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) where the compound was discovered. BTG will share approximately 10% of the upfront and milestone revenues it receives relating to BGC 945 with ICR plus a pass-through royalty.
BGC 945 is a compound that inhibits thymidylate synthase (TS), an enzyme involved in cell growth and division. However, unlike traditional TS inhibitors, BGC 945 enters tumour cells via the alpha-folate receptor, which is over-expressed in certain tumour types, including ovarian, lung, endometrial and mesothelioma cells, but has a restricted expression profile in normal tissues.
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