These renewable, three-year, master agreements establish a framework for collaboration on a variety of initiatives across a range of AstraZeneca oncology products and research projects. The umbrella agreements address pre-clinical and clinical research in a way that will allow the two organizations to more efficiently and effectively work to answer future research questions. The specific terms of the agreements are confidential.
"Establishing a framework for our ongoing relationship will save time and effort when negotiating individual research projects in the future," says Les Hughes, Global Head of Cancer Research. "It is vital that we collaborate effectively with the best cancer research institutions if we are to meet our goals of finding effective treatments for patients with cancer."
AstraZeneca and M. D. Anderson share a mutual goal of designing clinical trials that more efficiently determine the effectiveness of innovative cancer treatments in helping patients. The broad nature of these agreements aim to accomplish this by better integrating pre-clinical and clinical research. Scientists will combine resources and expertise in disease intervention and translational science to address key questions in the lab and later translate those findings to the clinic.
"Integrating ideas with industry earlier in the drug development process will enhance our ability to bring new treatments from the bench to the bedside more rapidly," says Robert Bast, M.D., vice president for translational research at M. D. Anderson. "To make the most rapid progress in the era of targeted therapies, we need new ways to organize our research and to collaborate with pharma for the benefit of our patients."
AstraZeneca has a strong pipeline of novel cancer agents, including both small molecules and monoclonal antibodies, directed at targets with potential in various cancer settings. The overarching master pre-clinical and clinical agreements will allow scientists in both organizations the flexibility to work in a variety of ways across a portfolio of agents to accelerate development of new treatments that may benefit cancer patients.
ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS M. D. ANDERSON CANCER CENTER
M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, a component of The University of Texas System, has established an international reputation as one of the world's preeminent centers for cancer patient care, research, education and prevention. A multidisciplinary patient care approach and dedication to translational research, education and prevention are hallmarks of M. D. Anderson, which also holds the distinction of being designated by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) as one of the first three Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States. M. D. Anderson has been named the nation's top cancer hospital by U.S. News and World Report's "Best Hospitals" survey four out of the past six years. More than 70,000 cancer patients receive care at M. D. Anderson each year.
AstraZeneca is a major international healthcare business engaged in the research, development, manufacture and marketing of prescription pharmaceuticals and the supply of healthcare services. It is one of the world's leading pharmaceutical companies with healthcare sales of over $21.4 billion and leading positions in sales of gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, respiratory, oncology and neuroscience products. In the United States, AstraZeneca is a $9.6 billion healthcare business with more than 12,000 employees. AstraZeneca is listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (Global) as well as the FTSE4Good Index. Worldwide, AstraZeneca has six major research and development sites, four discovery facilities and a clinical research site. In total, AstraZeneca's R&D organization is comprised of more 11,500 people located in seven countries including Canada, France, India, Japan, Sweden, United Kingdom and the United States.