Collaborations

Epizyme has entered into strategic collaborations for several therapeutic programs. These collaborations are important elements of our strategy to build a leading, independent biopharmaceutical company. We believe that our collaborations contribute to our ability to rapidly advance our therapeutic product candidates, build our product platform and concurrently progress a wide range of discovery and development programs.

 

In November 2018, we entered a collaboration with Boehringer Ingelheim focused on the research, development, and commercialization of novel small molecule inhibitors directed toward two previously unaddressed epigenetic targets as potential therapies for people with cancer. Specifically, these targets are enzymes within the helicase and histone acetyltransferase (HAT) families that when dysregulated have been linked to the development of cancers that currently lack therapeutic options.

 

Genentech

In June 2016, we entered into a collaboration agreement with Genentech, a member of the Roche Group, to conduct a clinical trial to investigate the combination of tazemetostat and Genentech’s approved anti-PD-L1 cancer immunotherapy, Tecentriq™ (atezolizumab), for the treatment of patients with relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL), the most common form of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL). Under the agreement, Genentech is managing study operations for the Phase 1b clinical trial.

 

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In May 2016, we entered into a collaboration agreement with the Lymphoma Study Association (LYSA) to investigate the combination of tazemetostat with R-CHOP, a standard chemotherapy for NHL, as a front-line treatment in elderly, high-risk patients with newly diagnosed DLBCL. LYSA is a premier cooperative group in France dedicated to clinical and translational research for lymphoma, and is certified by the French National Cancer Institute. This Phase 1b/2 study is being conducted with the Lymphoma Academic Research Organisation (LYSARC), the operational arm of LYSA, at multiple sites in France.

 

Eisai

In March 2015, we entered into an amended and restated collaboration and license agreement with Eisai, under which we reacquired worldwide rights excluding Japan to tazemetostat. We are responsible for global development, manufacturing and commercialization outside of Japan of tazemetostat and any other EZH2 product candidates, with Eisai retaining development and commercialization rights in Japan, as well as a right to elect to manufacture tazemetostat and any other EZH2 product candidates in Japan.

 

Roche

In December 2012, together with Eisai, we entered into an agreement with Roche Molecular Systems, Inc., to develop and to commercialize a companion diagnostic to identify patients who have certain EZH2 mutations that are targeted by tazemetostat. We are using the diagnostic designed in collaboration with Roche to identify EZH2 mutations in patients in our five-arm Phase 2 study in NHL.

 

Celgene

In April 2012, we entered into a collaboration and license agreement with Celgene under which we granted Celgene an exclusive license to our DOT1L program, among other programs, outside the United States, including pinometostat (EPZ-5676), the therapeutic candidate now in clinical development. We retained 100 percent of United States rights and are eligible to receive royalties on net product sales outside of the United States.

Under the collaboration, Celgene will have the option to license histone methyltransferase (HMT) inhibitors being developed by Epizyme against three predefined targets. Epizyme regained global rights to the remainder of its pipeline, as Celgene’s option to license ex-US rights for any other preclinical programs was terminated.

 

gsk

In January 2011, we entered into a collaboration and license agreement with GSK to discover, develop and commercialize novel small molecule HMT inhibitors directed to three targets from our product platform. Under the agreement, we are eligible to receive certain development milestones and GSK is required to pay us royalties on worldwide net product sales.