AbbVie and I-Mab have signed a broad, global collaboration agreement for the development and commercialisation of lemzoparlimab, an innovative anti-CD47 monoclonal antibody internally discovered and developed by I-Mab for the treatment of multiple cancers.
In addition, the two partners have the potential to expand the collaboration to additional transformative therapies.
Lemzoparlimab – also known as TJC4 – is one of the leading drug candidates among I-Mab’s proprietary and innovative pipeline. It is designed to minimise inherent binding to normal red blood cells while preserving its strong anti-tumour activity, a critical attribute in potentially differentiating lemzoparlimab from other antibodies of the same class currently in development.
Topline results of the recent phase 1 clinical trial confirm possible differentiation of lemzoparlimab in drug safety and a more favorable pharmacokinetics profile in cancer patients. Results have shown that lemzoparlimab is well tolerated as a single agent at a dose range of up to 30 mg/kg without any priming dose.
In all DLT-evaluable patients, no dose-limiting toxicities or severe hematologic adverse events were observed. Full data will be presented at an appropriate scientific conference later this year.
“The addition of I-Mab’s novel CD47 programs complements our global clinical strategy in haematology and immuno-oncology,” said Thomas J. Hudson, Senior Vice President of R&D and Chief Scientific Officer at AbbVie.
“We have been impressed with what I-Mab has been able to accomplish in research and clinical development and we look forward to working together to make a meaningful difference in the lives of millions of patients globally.”
AbbVie will pay I-Mab $180 million in an upfront payment to exclusively license lemzoparlimab, along with $20 million in a milestone payment based on the Phase 1 results, for a total of $200 million.
In addition, I-Mab will be eligible to receive up to $1.74 billion in success-based milestone payments for lemzoparlimab, of which $840 million are based on clinical development and regulatory approval milestones, with the remainder based on commercial milestones.
Upon commercialisation of lemzoparlimab, AbbVie will also pay tiered royalties from low-to-mid teen percentages on global net sales outside of greater China.