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Abbott Gets Sub-license to Develop Companion Dx for Pfizer Drug

By a GenomeWeb staff reporter

NEW YORK (GenomeWeb News) – Following a patent licensing deal with Cell Signaling Technology, Pfizer will grant a sub-license to Abbott to develop a companion diagnostic test for selecting patients to be treated with Pfizer's crizotinib, an investigational anaplastic lymphoma kinase inhibitor.

Abbott will develop a fluorescence in situ hybridization-based test, under the terms of the sub-license.

The deal between Pfizer and Abbott follows an announcement by Cell Signaling Technologies late Tuesday that it had licensed to Pfizer on a worldwide, non-exclusive basis a patent related to EML4 anaplastic lymphoma kinase, or ALK. That license is being issued under the patent estates pooled by CST and Astellas Pharma.

Pfizer and Abbott had entered into an agreement in 2009 to develop and commercialize a diagnostic test to screen non-small cell lung cancer tumors for the presence of rearrangements in the ALK gene, which has been found to be present in a subset of patients with NSCLC. ALK-positive detection is necessary for selecting patients for Pfizer's crizotinib, CST noted in its statement.

Financial and other terms of the licenses were not disclosed.

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