Sweden-based Medivir and UK’s Cancer Research Technology (CRT) have announced a partnership to conduct a two-year research programme to optimize and develop small molecules targeting the cell surface protein ADAM8, which has been linked to tumour survival, cell invasion and metastasis. Under the terms of the agreement, Medivir receives an exclusive, global license to research, develop, manufacture and commercialize ADAM8 inhibitor drugs resulting from development. CRT receives an upfront payment and future success milestones as well as royalties on sales which are shared with the academic collaborators.

The research will be led by Professor Jörg Bartsch as head of the TransMIT-Project Division for Research in Neuro-Oncology at TransMIT GmbH, Marburg University, in collaboration with Medivir. Prof. Bartsch previously worked at King’s College London where the initial patent application was filed. Further proof of concept studies were funded by Cancer Research UK at King’s College.