Allergan, Pieris AG agreement targets anticalin for treatment of ocular disorders

September 16, 2009

Pieris AG announced that it has entered into a collaboration agreement with Allergan Inc. that will combine Pieris' proprietary anticalin technology with Allergan's drug delivery and ophthalmic drug development with a goal of developing agents for the treatment of serious ocular disorders.

Freising-Weihenstephan, Germany-Pieris AG announced that it has entered into a collaboration agreement with Allergan Inc. that will combine Pieris' proprietary anticalin technology with Allergan's drug delivery and ophthalmic drug development with a goal of developing agents for the treatment of serious ocular disorders.

Under the terms of the collaboration, Pieris will work with Allergan to optimize existing lead anticalins and to design novel anticalins. Allergan will be solely responsible for all discovery, development, and commercialization costs and will be responsible for clinical development and related activities and commercialization, according to a prepared statement.

Pieris has granted Allergan a global and exclusive license for specific anticalins to be used in the field and in return will receive an upfront payment of $10 million. Further financial terms were not disclosed.

Anticalins are a class of biologic drugs that are engineered to bind disease-relevant targets with high affinity and specificity. They are based on naturally occurring proteins called lipocalins, which are present in human plasma and body fluids where they function to bind, store, and transport various small molecules including lipids and hormones, according to a prepared statement.

"Allergan has world-class expertise in ophthalmology, and we look forward to working together to develop anticalins as important medicines for the treatment of a number of ocular diseases,” said Claus Schalper, interim chief executive officer of Pieris. “This collaboration further validates the potential for anticalins as a new drug-class.”