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Pharmaceuticals / Research and Development / Commercial Operations

Daiichi Asks Two U.S. Companies for Help on Novel Therapeutic Candidates

Jan. 13, 2014

Daiichi Sankyo has signed an agreement with two U.S. companies — Celdara Medical and Virtici — to investigate new therapeutic options and prime the Japanese drugmaker’s pipeline.

The partnership, announced Thursday, will focus primarily on oncology. Daiichi Sankyo is set to provide funding to Virtici and Celdara for identifying targets; the three may then develop those targets until proof-of-concept, after which point, Daiichi will have the option to continue exclusive development.

Daiichi currently has three oncology drug candidates in Phase II and four in Phase III.

Seattle startup Virtici, founded in 2011, and New Hampshire-based Celdara work with academics to provide access to wet labs, as well as diligence processes, to ensure its partners’ innovations are top-notch, Celdara spokesperson Jake Reder said Friday. — Lena Freund

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