MedImmune, the global biologics research and development arm of AstraZeneca, MedImmune is pioneering innovative research and exploring novel pathways across key therapeutic areas, including oncology, respiratory disease, inflammation, autoimmunity, cardiovascular disease, metabolic disease, neuroscience, and infection and vaccines. Since its founding of the company in 1988, MedImmune has remained committed to scientific innovation and medical progress, continually looking beyond standard expectations and pushing the boundaries of what is possible.
Together with AstraZeneca, MedImmune has?an exciting and balanced pipeline underpinned by great science. Uniquely positioned with both large and small molecules, the development pipeline, which includes more than 120 research projects and product candidates, forms a robust portfolio of investigational therapies in varied stages of clinical development. This unique pipeline?comprise approximately half of AstraZeneca?s overall R&D portfolio.
MedImmune Oncology is a core therapy area for AstraZeneca spanning both small molecule and biologics research and development. MedImmune is developing a comprehensive portfolio with an emphasis on two key areas in oncology development: antibody-drug conjugates and immune-mediated cancer therapy, which aims to harness the power of the patient?s own immune system to fight cancer. Together, immune-mediated cancer therapies and antibody-drug conjugates have the potential to treat cancer in a way that current therapies are unable to do.
In October 2013 MedImmune acquired Spirogen, a company focused on antibody-drug conjugate technology for use in oncology. Spirogen develops pyrrolobenzodiazepine-armed antibody-drug conjugates.?The proprietary pyrrolobenzodiazepine (PBD) technology attaches highly potent cytotoxic agents, or ?payloads? to specific cancer-targeting antibodies using biodegradable ?linkers?. This targeting optimises the delivery of the cancer drug to the tumour cells only and provides the greatest degree of tumour killing while minimising the toxicity to the patient. ?The technology is?expected to emerge as a critical component in the next generation of cancer biologics with the potential to make a difference for oncologists and their patients.
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