NEW YORK – Singapore-based AUM Biosciences and China-based Newsoara Biopharma on Wednesday announced that they had entered into a five-year strategic collaboration to develop up to six agents in AUM's pipeline, which consists of cancer therapies targeting critical biological pathways.
For its part of the partnership, Newsoara will be responsible for the development and commercialization of the agents within greater China and will help fund the development of any future investigational compounds in the region. The compounds that AUM has out-licensed to Newsoara within greater China from the onset include AUM001, a small-molecule MNK 1/2 inhibitor that AUM is developing as a treatment for certain blood cancers, and AUM302, a PI3K/AKT/mTOR inhibitor that AUM is developing for certain blood cancers and solid tumors.
A third candidate, AUM003, is also included in the initial agreement, and down the line Newsoara will obtain the greater China rights to up to three additional candidates. Beyond greater China, AUM will continue to own the rights to the agents in its pipeline as well as any newly developed compounds.
AUM utilizes an artificial intelligence-centered approach to drug discovery, and the additional compounds it develops going forward will be directed at specific biomarker-driven targets. According to the companies, AUM and Newsoara will mutually agree upon these novel targets for additional compounds and will co-fund their discovery and development. Newsoara will contribute potential R&D funding for investigational compounds in greater China.
In forming the partnership, AUM has received an undisclosed collaboration fee and will receive up to $135M in near-term development, regulatory, and commercial milestone payments. The company will likewise be eligible to receive double-digit royalty payments.
Newsoara CEO Benny Li also will join AUM's Board of Directors.
"This collaboration is foundational for AUM and will allow us to act as one team to maximize the clinical and commercial potential of AUM's molecules, greatly amplifying and expediting the opportunities in our pipeline," Vishal Doshi, AUM's CEO, said in a statement. "This partnership accelerates AUM's path to becoming an independent, fully integrated biopharmaceutical company."