Nordic Nanovector is collaborating with Heidelberg Pharma to access the promising antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) technology. However, can it really take on the strong competition?
Nordic Nanovector develops antibody-radionuclide conjugates (ARCs) to treat Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma (NHL) and other blood cancers. Today, the company has announced a collaboration with Wilex’ subsidiary Heidelberg Pharma to incorporate antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) for leukemia in its pipeline.
The ARC and ADC technologies are similar: a tumor-specific antibody is chemically linked to a molecule that kills the target cell. However, ADCs seem to be way more popular, presumably because they’re effective against a wider range of tumors than ARCs. The main difference is that ARCs are linked to a molecule that emits beta radiation, whereas ADCs carry a toxin that interacts with intracellular molecules.
Nordic Nanovector’s lead ARC candidate, Betalutin (lilotomab), is proving safe and effective in Phase I/II trials for NHL. With this move into the more popular ADCs, the company plans to sum the leukemia market, which is expected to reach over €5B by 2020,