At the end of 2013 you might be wondering what... year. With our Horizon 2020 Workshop we looked ahead at...

Eva-Maria Gottmann
BioRN News November 2013
Dienstag, 3. Dezember 2013 13:51:22
Dear reader,
At the end of 2013 you might be wondering what is planned for next
year. With our Horizon 2020 Workshop we looked ahead at the
upcoming Framework Program for Research and Innovation of the
European Commission. We are happy that more than 100 people
joined our workshop to find out about new funding possibilities.
‹read more›
We have organized valuable networking events and conferences and
provided services for biotech organizations this year, and we will
continue to do so in 2014. There will be a conference to conclude and to critically review 5 years as a leading-edge cluster, further biotech
entrepreneurship activities, and much more.
This is the last newsletter for 2013, so I would like to wish everyone
a wonderful Christmas season and a happy new year!
Eva-Maria Gottmann
Marketing & Communications
BioRN Cluster Management GmbH
Stay informed via Twitter and RSS-Feed: BIORN NEWS NOVEMBER 2013
01 | Press releases from the BioRN Cluster
02 | Upcoming Events in the BioRN Cluster
03 | From BioRN Cluster Management and BioRN Network
» 2. BioRN Entrepreneurship Forum
» Successful Horizon 2020-Workshop
» Biotech Entrepreneurship and Leadership Lectures with Dr. Gitte Neubauer
» New BioRN Network Members: PW Technologies and Health Vision GmbH
05 | Leading-edge Cluster project – Technical Showcase
» Affimed Therapeutics AG: Development of a novel, tumor-antigen-specific RECRUIT-
TandAb for the T-cell-mediated lysis of solid tumors
06 | Imprint
November 20, 2013
Biopharm GmbH enters into Co-Research Agreement with Merck
... [more]
November 20, 2013
Roche's Kadcyla approved in the EU for advanced HER2-positive
breast cancer ... [more]
November 15, 2013
DKFZ: Defective packaging protein boosts gene activity in brain
cancer cells ... [more]
November 15, 2013
Merck Strengthens its Presence in China with New Pharmaceutical
Manufacturing Facility ... [more]
November 14, 2013
SYGNIS reports nine month results for the period ended 30
September 2013 ... [more]
November 13, 2013
Heidelberg University: How Argonaute Proteins Intervene in the
Gene Regulation Process ... [more]
November 13, 2013
PEPperPRINT and MalVa announce a joint project in Malaria
vaccine development ... [more]
November 13, 2013
Merck Enters into Further Global Co-Development and
Commercialization Agreement for PARP Inhibitor with Chinese R&D
Company BeiGene ... [more]
November 12, 2013
Affimed Therapeutics Appoints Dr. Jens-Peter Marschner as Chief
Medical Officer ... [more]
November 11, 2013
DKFZ: Binding protein prevents vascular chaos ... [more]
November 07, 2013
Roche’s Gazyva helped people with one of the most common
forms of blood cancer live significantly longer without their disease
worsening compared to MabThera/Rituxan in phase III CLL11 study
... [more]
November 04, 2013
FDA approves Roche’s Gazyva (obinutuzumab) for people with
previously untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) ...
November 04, 2013
Roche and Polyphor join efforts to combat multi-drug-resistant
bacterial infections ... [more]
October 30, 2013
DKFZ: How a secret friendship of two enzymes makes apoptosis
possible ... [more]
October 28, 2013
DKFZ: Radiation therapy mobilizes the immune system against
tumors ... [more]
» back to top
November 26, 2013
Biotech>inside "Standortsicherung und Standortentwicklung in
Baden-Württemberg unter besonderer Berücksichtigung der
Biotechnologie als Innovationsmotor" [more]
November 27, 2013
Biotech Entrepreneurship & Leadership Lectures (BELL) Thomas
Höger: Finance [more]
November 27-29, 2013
GMP Seminar: Validierung analytischer Methoden in der
Biotechnologie (A 16) [more]
November 28, 2013
BioRN Entrepreneurship Forum II (BEF) - Dr. Ingmar Hoerr, CEO,
CureVac GmbH, Tuebingen [more]
November 29-30, 2013
3rd European Conference on Whole-Slide Imaging and Analysis in
Heidelberg [more]
December 02, 2013
HITS colloquia: Early steps in targeting "undruggable" proteins
using long molecular dynamics simulations; Dr. Paul Maragakis
December 02, 2013
Meyenburg Cancer Research Award Symposium 2013 [more]
December 04, 2013
Distinguished Lecturer Seminar Series: Johanna Lampe - Fred
Hutchinson Cancer Research Center [more]
December 05, 2013
EMBL Forum seminars on Science and Society: Schizophrenia 2013:
the journey from 'madness' to molecular etiology [more]
December 06, 2013
Verleihung des Lautenschläger-Forschungspreises 2013 [more]
December 11, 2013
Biotech Entrepreneurship & Leadership Lectures (BELL) Jürgen
Bauer: IP and Technology Transfer [more]
December 11, 2013
Wissenschaftsdialog Mannheim: Grüne Biotechnologie: Gentechnik
in der Landwirtschaft und Lebensmittelproduktion - wie nachhaltig
ist das? [more]
December 16, 2013
Distinguished Lecturer Seminar Series: Anton Berns - NCI
Netherlands [more]
January 08, 2014
Biotech Entrepreneurship & Leadership Lectures (BELL) Ralf Eckert:
Global Business Development [more]
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2. BioRN Entrepreneurship Forum
On November 28, 2013, BioRN Network e.V. will host the second
BioRN Entrepreneurship Forum. The guest speaker will be Dr.
Ingmar Hoerr, CEO of CureVac, Tübingen.
A profile of Dr. Hoerr and CureVac is available at the BIOPROWebsite.
Successful Horizon 2020-Workshop
In cooperation with the "Nationale Kontaktstelle
Lebenswissenschaften" the BioRN Cluster Management informed
scientists from research institutions and companies (particularly
SMEs) about the new EU program “Horizon 2020”. More than 100
guests received a broad overview of Challenges 1 (Health) and 2
If you have any questions concerning Horizon 2020, please contact
Dr. Stephanie Bechtel ([email protected]).
Biotech Entrepreneurship and Leadership Lectures with Dr.
Gitte Neubauer
On November 13, 2013, Dr. Gitte Neubauer spoke under the
framework of the Biotech Entrepreneurship and Leadership
Lectures, a new program to foster leadership competencies in the
life sciences. In her talk Dr. Neubauer provided insight into the
founding history of Cellzome. She created a viable picture of the
ups and downs of her entrepreneurial journey with Cellzome –
starting at the very beginning at the EMBL and ending with being
acquired by GlaxoSmithKline.
The next lecture will be delivered by Dr. Thomas Höger of
Apogenix. His topic will be “Finance”.
Date: November 27, 2013 | 4–6 p.m. | Conference Center
Technologiepark Heidelberg
New BioRN Network Members: PW Technologies and Health
Vision GmbH
PW Technologies is a new company developing innovative earlystage projects in regenerative and personalized medicine to a preclinical proof-of-concept. The first project is a serum-based
biomarker for liver fibrosis. Find further information at:
HealthVision® GmbH is a spin-off of the ETH, the Swiss Federal
Institute of Technology Zurich. Located in Heidelberg, Health Vision
GmbH provides a range of services including strategic consultancy
and solutions for in-firm health management. For more information
please see
» back to top
Organization: Affimed Therapeutics AG
Project title: Development of a novel, tumor-antigen-specific
RECRUIT-TandAb for the T-cell-mediated lysis of solid tumors
EGFR dysregulation has been linked to numerous cancers, and
both small molecules and EGFR-targeting antibodies have
successfully reached the market. However, the antibodies
approved for medical use and those currently in development all
share severe side-effect profiles due to a broad expression of
EGFR on normal tissues. The deletion variant III of EGFR
(EGFRvIII), with a truncated extracellular domain and ensuing
ligand-independent constitutive activity, is the most common
mutant form associated with oncogenic transformation. EGFRvIII is
expressed exclusively in cancer tissues and is associated with an
especially aggressive cancer phenotype; this antigen is found in
various solid tumor types.
Approach to problem-solving:
The restricted EGFRvIII expression on cancer cells provides an
opportunity to develop highly cytotoxic antibodies that target
cancer exclusively, sparing normal tissues and substantially
reducing the side effects associated with EGFR therapy. T cells are
potent tumor-killing effector cells that cannot be recruited by
native antibodies. To harness the cytotoxic capacity of T cells for
the treatment of several types of solid tumors (e.g. glioblastoma,
prostate cancer) Affimed is developing bispecific tetravalent
antibodies, with two binding sites for each, CD3 and EGFRvIII, the
Using phage-display libraries, we identified scFvs that selectively
bind to EGFRvIII. Engineered T-cell-recruiting TandAbs were
constructed which exhibit absolute specificity towards EGFRvIII,
with no wild-type EGFR binding, and which display cytotoxic
activity in the very low pM range. A high affinity for CD3 was
essential for efficacious T-cell recruitment and yet, in the absence
of target cells, TandAbs did not elicit T-cell activation; this will
contribute to a good safety profile. Affinity maturation of
EGFRvIII-binding moieties is performed to test whether increased
affinity can further enhance functional properties of the
therapeutic candidates. Currently, selected candidates are tested
in xenograft tumor models in mice. In parallel, further extensive in
vitro and biophysical characterization is performed in order to
select, as the next milestone, a suitable development candidate for
further IND-enabling preclinical development.
In summary, current data demonstrate that EGFRvIII/CD3
TandAbs are novel, highly potent drug candidates for the
treatment of EGFRvIII+ malignancies.
Resulting publications:
Kristina Ellwanger, Uwe Reusch, Carmen Burkhardt, Stefan
Knackmuss, Markus Eser, Fionnuala McAleese, Ivica Fucek, and
Eugene Zhukovsky (2013) A highly cytotoxic EGFRvIII/CD3
TandAb recruits T cells to specifically and potently kill several
types of solid tumor cancers. Poster at EORTC / AACR Molecular
Targets and Cancer Therapeutics Conference, October 19–23,
Boston, MA
Contact person:
Affimed Therapeutics AG
Im Neuenheimer Feld 582
69120 Heidelberg
E-mail: [email protected]
Tel: +49 6221 65307 10
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Publisher: BioRN Cluster Management GmbH
Im Neuenheimer Feld 582, 69120 Heidelberg, Germany
Responsible for the content: Dr. Christian Tidona
Phone: +49 6221 655780
Email: [email protected]
Commercial Register: Mannheim, HRB 704801
VAT ID: DE 2630 64 014
Editors: Dr. Stephanie Konle, Eva-Maria Gottmann, Yvonne
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