Biocytogen Pharmaceuticals has announced a partnership through an antibody evaluation, option, and license agreement with Ona Therapeutics, a Spanish biotech firm specialising in uncovering novel biology for the design of biopharmaceuticals targeting advanced cancer.

Under the terms of the agreement, Biocytogen will provide Ona with the opportunity to assess Biocytogen’s proprietary fully human antibodies derived from RenMice against a specific tumour target.

Ona will have the option to exclusively license chosen antibodies for the development, manufacturing, and commercialisation of antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) in mutually agreed-upon indications and territories.

Biocytogen will receive an upfront payment for granting the option and will also be entitled to an option-exercise fee, along with milestone payments for development and commercialisation.

Additionally, Biocytogen stands to receive single-digit royalties on net sales once Ona decides to exercise the option in its entirety.

Biocytogen president and CEO Dr Yuelei Shen said: “As part of Project Integrum, Biocytogen has been discovering fully human antibodies against 200 TAA targets based on their internalization activity.

“We are honoured that Ona, among other global biopharmaceutical companies, recognises the potential of our proprietary off-the-shelf antibodies.

“We believe Ona’s deep understanding of novel mechanisms of resistance in advanced cancer and their capabilities in ADC design and development will accelerate the development of our antibodies into promising therapeutics.”

Ona CEO and co-founder Dr Valerie Vanhooren said: “We look forward to evaluating Biocytogen’s proprietary antibodies for ADC uses.

“We believe the combination of Biocytogen’s rich antibody repertoire with Ona’s unique insight in advanced cancer biology will have great advantages in the discovering and developing of first-in-class molecules for unmet medical needs.”