Pharma Focus Europe

Araris Biotech AG Acquires ARS Pharmaceutical’s Nectin-4 Antibody

Tuesday, April 18, 2023

Araris Biotech AG, a company pioneering a proprietary antibody-drug conjugate (ADC)-linker technology, today announced the execution of an asset purchase agreement for the acquisition of ARS Pharmaceutical’s Nectin-4 antibody. The antibody was initially developed as part of an immune stimulating ADC by Silverback Therapeutics prior to its merger with ARS. Araris intends to use the antibody in the development of a differentiated Nectin-4 ADC using its proprietary linker technology to broaden its ADC pipeline.

Nectin-4 is a tumor-associated antigen overexpressed in a variety of large tumor indications and has been used as a target in ADC development previously. Under the terms of the agreement Araris will acquire ARS’ antibody against Nectin-4. The deal enables Araris to combine its proprietary linker technology with ARS’ GLP-tox ready Nectin-4 antibody, in order to develop targeted ADC therapeutics, with various linker-payloads, for the treatment of solid tumors of high unmet medical need.

“We aim to use this antibody together with our one-step conjugation technology and linker-payload toolbox for the development of next-generation Nectin-4 targeted therapies,” said Philipp Spycher, Ph.D., chief executive officer and co-founder of Araris Biotech. “Nectin-4 is a well validated oncology target but has shown significant on-target/off-tumor toxicity in current ADCs. In preliminary head-to-head studies, we demonstrated our linker technology enables improved efficacy and tolerability compared to existing Nectin-4 therapies, allowing Araris to generate ADCs with an improved therapeutic index. Acquiring this Nectin-4 antibody from ARS is a meaningful step forward for Araris in expanding our pipeline of ADC therapeutics and moving closer to advancing a candidate into clinical development.”



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