RARE Daily

BMS Acquires Orum’s Blood Cancer Program for Treatment of Myelodysplastic Syndromes

November 6, 2023

Rare Daily Staff

Bristol Myers Squibb has acquired Korean biotech Orum Therapeutics’ ORM-6151 program.

ORM-6151 is a first-in-class, anti-CD33 antibody-enabled GSPT1 degrader that has received the U.S. Food and Drug Administration clearance for a phase 1 clinical trial for the treatment of patients with acute myeloid leukemia or high-risk myelodysplastic syndromes.

Myelodysplastic syndromes (MDS) are a rare group of blood cancers characterized by abnormal development of blood cells within the bone marrow. The average survival rate for those with lower-risk MDS is six years and approximately 18 months for those with higher-risk MDS.

Individuals with MDS have abnormally low blood cell levels with symptoms including dizziness, fatigue, weakness, shortness of breath, bruising and bleeding, frequent infections, and headaches. In some cases, MDS may progress to bone marrow failure or an acute leukemia. The exact cause of MDS is unknown. It sometimes runs in families, but no disease-causing gene has been identified. Treatment depends on the affected individual’s age, general health, and type of MDS and may include red cell and/or platelet transfusions and antibiotics.

Under the terms of the deal, Bristol Myers Squibb will make an upfront payment of $100 million to Orum, and Orum Therapeutics is eligible to receive milestone payments for a total deal value of $180 million. Further details were not disclosed.

“We believe this agreement with Bristol Myers Squibb, a global leader in cancer with a strong legacy in protein degradation, validates Orum’s unique Dual-Precision Targeted Protein Degradation approach, which we pioneered to improve the therapeutic window and realize the full potential of targeted protein degraders through precision delivery to cancer cells via antibody drug conjugates,” said Sung Joo Lee, CEO of Orum Therapeutics.

Orum’s GSPT1 platform uses the company’s unique Dual-Precision Targeted Protein Degradation (TPD²) approach to build novel targeted protein degraders combined with the precise tumor cell delivery mechanisms of antibodies to generate innovative, first-in-class, tumor-selective TPDs for the treatment of cancer. Orum has developed new molecular glue degrader payloads to specifically degrade an intracellular target protein within cancer cells via the E3 ubiquitin ligase pathway. Conjugated to antibodies, the payloads are designed to be delivered specifically to cancer cells and degrade the intracellular target protein GSPT1 and cause tumor cell death.

Photo: Sung Joo Lee, CEO of Orum Therapeutics

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