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Cancer Research UK, Abcam Partner to Develop Custom Antibodies for Cancer Research

NEW YORK – Cancer Research UK and life science reagents and tools developer Abcam said on Tuesday that they will collaborate to develop and commercialize novel custom antibodies to support the acceleration of cancer research.  

The partners are aiming to create antibodies that will support research on cancer biology, help in the development of new diagnostic tools, and potentially be the basis of novel therapies. 

Under the terms of the partnership, Abcam will develop custom protein-based reagents for targets identified by researchers funded by Cancer Research UK. Abcam will supply antibodies developed within the terms of the agreement to Cancer Research UK-funded researchers for an agreed period of exclusivity, the organization noted. Subsequently, the reagents will be made readily accessible to the wider research and diagnostic development community.  

Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. 

"Abcam's antibody development capabilities and 'end-to-end' expertise will help provide our researchers with antibody reagents that can be applied from early-stage R&D right through to the clinic," Cancer Research UK Chief Business Officer Tony Hickson said in a statement. 

In January, Abcam acquired the gene editing platform and oncology product portfolio of Applied StemCell for the research and diagnostic markets. The deal included Applied StemCell's portfolio of cell lines and its AccuRef reference materials product line, which is used to mimic cancer mutations and create biologically relevant quality control and reference standards for more than 40 cancer genes. At the time, Abcam said it intended to use the acquisition partly to support its knockout validation initiative for antibody quality control.