Merck and Selvita Announce Drug Discovery Collaboration

Focus is to discover small molecule lead candidates for multiple oncology indications

Darmstadt, Germany, Krakow, Poland – November 2, 2015 – Merck, a leading science and technology company, announced today that its healthcare business has entered into a three-year collaboration to validate new therapeutic concepts in the field of oncology with Selvita, headquartered in Krakow, Poland. Financial details were not disclosed.

The aim of the collaboration is to deliver potential first-in-class small molecules as lead candidate drugs for multiple oncology indications. Both companies will contribute funding and resources to support the collaboration, as well as bring their expertise in target validation, bioinformatics, medicinal chemistry, in vitro and in vivo biology, and toxicology.

We are excited about our new collaboration and to continue our productive relationship with Selvita and to build upon our collective efforts of the last two years,” said Andree Blaukat, Head of the Translational Innovation Platform Oncology at Merck. “We are making strong progress in the area of cancer metabolism, and remain focused on bringing innovative new therapeutic options to patients that have the potential to make a substantial difference in their lives.

This collaboration will steer a joined portfolio of discovery projects in a risk/reward sharing model and builds on the framework that the two companies have developed during a two-year partnership in cancer metabolism which began in 2013.

Under the terms of the new agreement, Merck will have an exclusive license to the joint intellectual property and Selvita will receive milestone payments and royalties upon successful development and commercialization of products by Merck. The collaboration consists of a joint research phase up to lead identification, after which Merck will further research and develop the projects on its own.

Krzysztof Brzozka, Selvita Chief Scientific Officer, added: “Collaboration between Merck and Selvita is an excellent example of a successful joint drug discovery platform where both parties contribute their expertise to identify and validate novel therapeutic targets, in parallel developing new compounds and advancing them towards clinical development. This sort of deep and intensive type of collaboration is at the core of Selvita’s vision of modern drug discovery.

About Selvita

Selvita is a drug discovery company engaged in the research and development of breakthrough therapies in the area of oncology, as well as provision of integrated drug discovery services. Selvita was established and 2007 and currently employs over 280 people, including 88 PhDs, with extensive experience in area of life sciences. Selvita has currently several projects at early or late discovery stage and is expected to move its first candidates to the clinic in 2016. Drug discovery clients of Selvita include more than fifty large and medium-sized pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies from USA and Europe. Selvita offices are located in Greater Boston Area, San Francisco Area, Cambridge, UK, San Bruno, California, and Krakow, Poland. The company is listed on the Warsaw Stock Exchange (WSE:SLV).

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About Merck

Merck is a leading science and technology company in healthcare, life science and performance materials. Around 40,000 employees work to further develop technologies that improve and enhance life – from biopharmaceutical therapies to treat cancer or multiple sclerosis, cutting-edge systems for scientific research and production, to liquid crystals for smartphones and LCD televisions. In 2014, Merck generated sales of € 11.3 billion in 66 countries. Founded in 1668, Merck is the world’s oldest pharmaceutical and chemical company. The founding family remains the majority owner of the publicly listed corporate group. Merck, Darmstadt, Germany holds the global rights to the Merck name and brand. The only exceptions are the United States and Canada, where the company operates as EMD Serono, EMD Millipore and EMD Performance Materials.