AbCellera and Everest Medicines have signed a multi-year partnership and license agreement to discover therapeutic antibodies for up to ten targets selected by the latter.

The collaboration will aid in growing Everest’s portfolio of new treatments across various indications, with the preliminary programmes focusing on cancer targets.

Through the deal, Everest will benefit from an operating system that backs several antibody modalities to open novel target classes and unveil new disease fields to treatment access.

The alliance will use the full scope of AbCellera’s technology stack such as procuring fully humanised antibodies from the Trianni Mouse, sourcing single domain antibodies from camelids.

It will also help in merging any two antibodies to develop native bispecifics leveraging the OrthoMab protein engineering platform.

According to the deal, Everest will own rights to create and market antibodies developed through the partnership.

The company will also make research payments to AbCellera, which is also eligible to receive downstream clinical and commercial milestone payments, as well as royalty payments on net products sales.

AbCellera CEO and president Carl Hansen said: “We are proud to partner with Everest as they build a robust pipeline of innovative medicines for patients in Asia and beyond.

“We believe our full-stack discovery engine, combined with Everest’s clinical development capabilities, creates synergy and the opportunity to speed the delivery of therapies to patients around the world.”

Everest Medicines focuses on creating and marketing transformative pharmaceutical products for areas with unmet medical needs in Asian markets.

At present, the firm has a portfolio of ten molecules, of which several are in late-stage clinical development.

Everest Medicines chief scientific officer Jennifer Yang said: “This collaboration will allow us to gain access to AbCellera’s cutting-edge, AI-powered antibody discovery platform, which will greatly accelerate and increase the efficiency of our internal discovery efforts.”

Prior to this, Everest signed a definitive agreement with Providence Therapeutics to licence rights to the latter’s messenger ribonucleic acid Covid-19 vaccine candidates in certain emerging markets in Asia.