Roche skeptical about investing more in ‘guided-missile’ ADC cancer drugs

A logo of Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche is pictured in front of the company’s building in Rotkreuz, Switzerland, April 12, 2012. REUTERS / Michael Buholzer

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MANNHEIM, June 24 (Reuters) – Roche (ROG.S) remains skeptical about investing more in the field of antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs), which have been described as “guided-missile” cancer drugs due to their precision, even as the field attracts heightened attention in the pharmaceutical industry.

“There are quite a few companies that invest in this area. As for us, we still have rather limited interest,” Chief Executive Severin Schwan told journalists at a briefing.

The Swiss group’s CEO declined to comment when asked about any takeover interest in ADC specialist Seagen Inc (SGEN.O) which, according to a Wall Street Journal report last week, has attracted Merck & Co (MRK.N) and other rival drugmakers as potential suitors. read more

Roche was an early ADC pioneer with the drugs Kadcyla and Polivy but was disappointed by the outcome of further development efforts in the field.

Elsewhere, however, a recent drug trial success underscored the prospects of AstraZeneca (AZN.L) and Daiichi Sankyo’s (4568.T) ADC Enhertu as a potential multi-billion seller. read more

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Reporting by Ludwig Burger, Editing by Miranda Murray

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.


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