Halozyme, Ventana Forge Partnership to Develop Cancer Companion Diagnostics
Halozyme Therapeutics and Ventana Medical Systems have entered into an agreement to collaborate on a companion diagnostic assay for use with Halozyme’s drug PEGPH20, an FDA- and European Commission-designated orphan drug for the treatment of pancreatic cancer.
The assay will be designed to detect high levels of hyaluronan, a type of chain of natural sugars that can accumulate around cancer cells. As stipulated by the deal, Ventana will develop and commercialize the in vitro diagnostic, which will then be submitted for regulatory approval in the U.S., Europe and other territories.
Halozyme plans a worldwide Phase III clinical study for PEGPH20 in 2016, evaluating the drug with Abraxane (nab-paclitaxel) and gemcitabine in metastatic pancreatic cancer patients with high HA levels.
Ventana, a subsidiary of the Roche Group, markets cancer diagnostic products. It is based in Tucson, Ariz.
Halozyme develops oncology therapies that target tumor microenvironments. It is based in San Diego, Calif. — Jason Scott