Pharmaceutical giant AbbVie and Northwestern University have made a five-year deal to collaborate on cancer research.
As part of the agreement, scientists at Northwestern's Lurie Cancer Center in Chicago will be able to access new therapies developed by North Chicago-based AbbVie for research funded under the deal. AbbVie will be able to exclusively license any discoveries made during their collaboration.
“One of the best steps AbbVie can take to deliver new therapies in oncology is to combine our research and discovery expertise with the talents and insight of our colleagues in academic medicine,” Dr. Gary Gordon, AbbVie's vice president of oncology clinical development, said in a joint statement announcing the deal.
AbbVie announced a similar collaboration today with Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, of which Gordon is an alumnus and former faculty member, as well as one earlier this year with the University of Chicago.
Such agreements can be lucrative. Cancer is one of the most expensive diseases, with patients often seeking out top-notch specialists and receiving multiple treatments.
AbbVie and Lurie plan to focus on lung, colorectal, breast, prostate and blood cancers such as leukemia. A joint committee will determine which research projects AbbVie and Lurie will team up on, and researchers will hold a symposium at least once a year to discuss their research and potential ideas for which new projects to tackle, the statement said.
Lurie treats more than 10,000 new cancer cases a year and is affiliated with four teaching hospitals in Chicago, according to its website: Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Lurie Children's Hospital, the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago and Jesse Brown Veterans Affairs Medical Center.
AbbVie is a $22.86 billion company that makes the top-selling drug in the world, Humira. The injectable drug treats a variety of autoimmune conditions, including Crohn's disease and rheumatoid arthritis.
"AbbVie, Northwestern collaborate on cancer research" originally appeared in Crain's Chicago Business.