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 16th May 2011 Clavis Pharma


Oslo, Norway, 16 May 2011 Clavis Pharma ASA (OSE: CLAVIS), a Norwegian cancer drug development company, and Translational Therapeutics, Inc., a Massachusetts, USA based private biopharmaceutical company, announced today that they have entered into a strategic licensing agreement regarding the development and commercialization of CP-4033.

CP-4033 is a patented, Lipid Vector Technology (LVT) derivative of ribavirin currently in the preclinical stage of development. Translational Therapeutics will develop CP-4033 for use in the treatment of aggressive thyroid cancer and will evaluate the potential of CP-4033 for use in the treatment of other solid tumours.

Clavis Pharma’s intellectual property (IP) surrounding CP-4033 is complementary to Translational Therapeutics’ IP estate around the use of ribavirin analogues for the treatment of human cancers and its companion diagnostic and therapeutic response monitoring technologies. The combined patent estate provides a solid foundation upon which to base a targeted cancer drug development programme. Under the terms of the agreement, Translational Therapeutics will be responsible for all future development of CP-4033. Clavis Pharma will receive a minority equity stake in Translational Therapeutics and potential future milestone and royalty payments. Further terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Aggressive thyroid cancer belongs to the family of so-called elF4E cancers, which demonstrate abnormally high activity of the translation factor and oncogene, elF4E. Elevated levels of elF4E are known to promote cell growth, metastasis, and angiogenesis, and inhibit programmed cell death. Ribavirin has been demonstrated to antagonize eIF4E’s oncogenic effects and preclinical studies with CP-4033 conducted by Translational Therapeutics demonstrate that CP-4033 appears to be even more effective at inhibiting eIF4E’s oncogenic activities. Elevated elF4E activity is believed to play a role in about 30% of human cancers. Olav Hellebø, CEO of Clavis Pharma, said: “This deal for CP-4033 is part of our strategy to leverage our Lipid Vector Technology platform to create new and improved drug candidates based on already well-established drugs. As we are focused on the development of our three most advanced compounds; elacytarabine and CP-4126 in Phase III and pivotal Phase II clinical trials respectively, and CP-4200, which will soon enter Phase I clinical trials, we are delighted that Translational Therapeutics will take on the development of this preclinical asset.”

Gordon Jamieson, CEO of Translational Therapeutics, said: “This agreement advances our strategy of commercializing high-value cancer therapeutic systems that provide superior, personalized, evidence-based clinical care solutions for the treatment of high-grade, poor prognosis human cancers.


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