NEW YORK – Newark, California-based Rain Therapeutics and Drexel University on Tuesday announced they had signed an exclusive, worldwide licensing agreement to develop and commercialize RAD52 inhibitors that Drexel is researching for the treatment of patients with homologous recombination deficient cancers.
Under the terms of the agreement, Rain will support Drexel's ongoing development of RAD52 inhibitors, as well as conduct independent research to optimize candidates for clinical development. Contingent on the successful development and commercialization of the targeted agents, Drexel will receive milestone payments and royalties. The partners did not disclose the financial details of their deal.
The agreement will allow Rain to grow its product portfolio with treatments directed at cancers driven by mutations in the DNA damage response pathway, specifically drugs for breast and ovarian cancers characterized by BRCA1/2 mutations.
"Rain was founded with the goal of developing biomarker-driven, tumor-agnostic approaches to cancer treatment, and we are thrilled to be building on that vision today with the addition of Drexel's RAD52 program to our pipeline," Rain CEO Avanish Vellanki said in a statement.
In preclinical research, inhibiting RAD52, a molecule involved in DNA damage repair pathways, has shown to kill cancer cells harboring mutations in BRCA1, BRCA2, or other genes involved in homologous recombination. RAD52-targeted inhibitors alone and in combination with PARP inhibitors have shown activity in xenograft models with BRCA1 mutations.