Country for PR: United States
Contributor: PR Newswire New York
Wednesday, January 11 2023 - 00:05
Ajinomoto and Exelixis Enter Into a License Agreement to Discover and Develop Novel Antibody-Drug Conjugates for the Treatment of Cancer
TOKYO, Jan. 10, 2023 /PRNewswire-AsiaNet/ --

Ajinomoto Co., Inc. ("Ajinomoto Co.") today announced a license agreement with 
Exelixis, Inc. ("Exelixis") to incorporate AJICAP(R), Ajinomoto Co.'s 
proprietary site-specific bioconjugation and linker technologies, in the 
development of certain of Exelixis' antibody-drug conjugate (ADC) programs.

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Exelixis is a commercially successful, oncology-focused biotechnology company 
that strives to accelerate the discovery, development and commercialization of 
new medicines for difficult-to-treat cancers. Utilizing its network of 
biotherapeutics collaborations, the company is developing next generation ADCs 
for the treatment of various cancers. Ajinomoto Co. is a leading technology 
provider for biopharmaceuticals and the owner of CDMO Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma 
Services. AJICAP(R) is Ajinomoto Co.'s proprietary site-specific bioconjugation 
and stable linker technologies compatible with commonly used antibody isotypes. 
AJICAP technology includes its "off-the-shelf" feature, allowing any 
therapeutic antibody at any stage of development to be conjugated to 
drug-payloads of choice without the need for antibody engineering or cell line 
development, and stable/hydrophilic linkers to generate antibody-drug 
conjugates with an enhanced therapeutic window.

As part of the license agreement, Exelixis will have the right to use the 
AJICAP technology to support its aim of advancing multiple ADCs with the 
potential for higher efficacy and lower toxicity than currently available 
options. Ajinomoto Co. is eligible to receive development, regulatory and 
commercial milestone payments as well as royalties on commercial sales.

Dr. Tatsuya Okuzumi, General Manager, Business Development Group, Bio-Pharma 
Services Department, Ajinomoto Co., expressed: "We are very excited to support 
Exelixis, a leader in oncology drug discovery, development, and 
commercialization, in the development of novel antibody-drug conjugates. The 
combination of Exelixis' antibodies and payloads with Ajinomoto Co.'s AJICAP 
opens up a wide range of oncology applications and may be harnessed to provide 
a clinical benefit to patients."

About Ajinomoto Co. and Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services Based on the corporate 
message "Eat Well, Live Well.", Ajinomoto Co., Inc. has been scientifically 
pursuing the possibilities of amino acids to aim for future growth by creating 
new value through sustainable and innovative solutions for communities and 
society. For additional information about Ajinomoto Co. (TYO: 2802), please 

As its pharmaceutical arm, Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services is a fully integrated 
contract development and manufacturing organization (CDMO) with sites in 
Belgium, United States, Japan, and India, providing comprehensive development, 
cGMP manufacturing, and aseptic fill finish services for small and large 
molecule APIs and intermediates. For more information about Ajinomoto 
Bio-Pharma Services, please visit

In addition, Ajinomoto Co. and Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services offer a broad 
range of innovative platform technologies and capabilities for pre-clinical and 
pilot programs to commercial quantities, including AJIPHASE(R) oligonucleotide 
manufacturing technology, CORYNEX(R) and TALAMAX(R) protein expression systems, 
AJICAP(R) site-specific conjugation and linker technologies for ADCs, 
continuous flow manufacturing and more. For additional information on the 
platform technologies, please visit

About Exelixis, Inc. Founded in 1994, Exelixis, Inc. (Exelixis) is a 
commercially successful, oncology-focused biotechnology company that strives to 
accelerate the discovery, development and commercialization of new medicines 
for difficult-to-treat cancers. Following early work in model system genetics, 
Exelixis established a broad drug discovery and development platform that has 
served as the foundation for our continued efforts to bring new cancer 
therapies to patients in need. Exelixis' discovery efforts have resulted in 
four commercially available products, CABOMETYX(R) (cabozantinib), COMETRIQ(R) 
(cabozantinib), COTELLIC(R) (cobimetinib) and MINNEBRO(R) (esaxerenone), and 
Exelixis has entered into partnerships with leading pharmaceutical companies to 
bring these important medicines to patients worldwide. Supported by revenues 
from marketed products and collaborations, Exelixis is committed to prudently 
reinvesting in our business to maximize the potential of our pipeline. Exelixis 
is supplementing existing therapeutic assets with targeted business development 
activities and internal drug discovery — all to deliver the next generation of 
Exelixis medicines and help patients recover stronger and live longer. Exelixis 
is a member of the Standard & Poor's (S&P) MidCap 400 index, which measures the 
performance of profitable mid-sized companies. For more information about 
Exelixis, please visit, follow @ExelixisInc on Twitter or like 
Exelixis, Inc. on Facebook.

SOURCE:  Ajinomoto Bio-Pharma Services