Merck Buys cCAM Biotherapeutics

YERUSHALAYIM -
A Merck sign stands in front of the company’s building in Summit, New Jersey.  (Kena Betancur/Getty Images)
A Merck sign stands in front of the company’s building in Summit, New Jersey. (Kena Betancur/Getty Images)

Merck announced on Tuesday the acquisition of the Israeli biomed company cCAM Biotherapeutics at a price of up to $605 million, Globes reported.

cCAM, a biopharmaceutical company which has specialized in the discovery and development of cancer immunotherapies, is located in Misgav, northern Israel.

Merck, acting through a subsidiary, is set to take possesson of all outstanding stock of cCAM in exchange for an upfront payment of $95 million in cash. cCAM shareholders are eligible to receive up to $510 million in performance payments for clinical development, regulatory and commercial milestones.

“We continue to strengthen our portfolio of immunotherapeutic candidates through strategic collaborations and acquisitions,” said Merck Research Laboratories president Dr. Roger M. Perlmutter. “The acquisition of cCAM supports our objective to advance the care of patients with cancer by stimulating tumor-directed immune responses.”

As a result of the deal, Merck will acquire several early immunotherapy candidates including cCAM Biotherapeutics’ lead pipeline candidate, CM-24, a novel monoclonal antibody (mAb) targeting the immune checkpoint protein CEACAM1 that is currently being evaluated in a Phase 1 study for the treatment of advanced or recurrent malignancies, including melanoma, non-small-cell lung, bladder, gastric and colorectal cancers.