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Caris Life Sciences, Elevation Oncology Team on Targeted Drug Development

NEW YORK – Caris Life Sciences and Elevation Oncology said Tuesday that they have entered a strategic collaboration to identify oncogenic fusions and mutations and develop therapeutics targeting these newly identified alterations.

Under the terms of the agreement, the companies will examine Caris' whole exome and transcriptome sequencing data on an ongoing basis, looking for and evaluating potential new drug targets, including those currently not actionable by an existing therapeutic.

According to the Irving, Texas-based Caris, this analysis will apply to both its historical datasets and new data routinely generated via its Molecular Intelligence platform over the term of the agreement.

Upon discovery of promising candidates, the two companies may then elect to initiate novel drug discovery programs or pursue licensing or product acquisitions. In either case, the two firms would retain exclusive access to any targets selected, they said. Any therapeutics selected by the parties, and subsequent companion diagnostics, will be developed on a cost-sharing basis, with revenue from any approved therapeutics also shared.

Other financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

"We hope to demonstrate how biopharmaceutical and molecular medicine companies can work hand in hand to realize visions that are shared across the precision oncology community," Shawn Leland, founder and CEO of New York-based Elevation Oncology, said in a statement.

"In Caris, we have found a collaborator … who can provide real-world insights into emerging or underserved genomically defined patient populations. Together, we believe we are pioneering a platform to accelerate the development of precision therapeutics and build toward a future where patients have the option of a matched therapy for every driver alteration — no matter how rare," he added.