AstraZeneca and Foundation Medicine enter strategic collaboration for Lynparza companion diagnostic assay

4 June 2016

AstraZeneca today announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement with Foundation Medicine, Inc. (Foundation Medicine) to develop a novel companion diagnostic assay for Lynparza (olaparib) to support its global development programme. The companion diagnostic will enable physicians to identify those patients most likely to benefit from AstraZeneca’s first-in-class poly ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP) inhibitor.

Lynparza is an innovative, oral PARP inhibitor that exploits tumour DNA repair pathway deficiencies to preferentially kill cancer cells. This mode of action gives Lynparza the potential for activity in a range of tumour types with DNA repair deficiencies. It is approved in the US for the treatment of patients with germline BRCA-mutated advanced ovarian cancer and in the EU for patients with platinum-sensitive relapsed BRCA-mutated high-grade serous epithelial ovarian, fallopian tube or primary peritoneal cancer.

Nina Mojas, Global Medicine Lead for Lynparza at AstraZeneca said: “This agreement supports the broad development programme for our first-in-class PARP inhibitor, Lynparza. Utilising Foundation Medicine’s leading capabilities in molecular information will help our work to assess the potential of the medicine to address unmet patient need across a number of cancers driven by DNA repair deficiencies, including and - significantly - beyond the BRCA mutations.”

Under the terms of the agreement, Foundation Medicine will develop and make available a regulatory approved product utilising the Quality Systems Regulations (QSR) compliant version of its FoundationOne® comprehensive genomic profiling platform.  This assay will detect multiple classes of genomic alterations across a range of genes involved in Homologous Recombination Repair (HRR). The assay, based on a scientifically selected panel of genes known to be involved in driving the HRR process, will be developed alongside the clinical programme for Lynparza, as part of a coordinated drug-diagnostic regulatory strategy.

Steven J. Kafka, Ph.D., President and chief operating officer for Foundation Medicine said: “Following our new master collaboration agreement with AstraZeneca, we are pleased to launch this first strategic initiative to support and advance the development of Lynparza in a number of cancers. The work we’ve undertaken with AstraZeneca underscores the importance and potential of utilising our rigorously validated, comprehensive profiling approach to make available to physicians an FDA-approved universal companion diagnostic solution for use with targeted medicines.”

Lynparza is the first approved medicine in a comprehensive pipeline of compounds AstraZeneca is developing targeted at the DNA Damage Repair (DDR) system. DDR is a term describing the network of cellular pathways that minimise the daily impact of DNA damage. Currently, many cancers are known to have defects in DDR pathways, which makes them dependent on and therefore highly sensitive to inhibition of the remaining DDR pathways. Targeting DDR deficiencies to preferentially kill cancer cells, while minimising the impact on normal cells, has potential for more selective, better tolerated therapies to improve survival in multiple cancers.


About Foundation Medicine
Foundation Medicine (NASDAQ:FMI) is a molecular information company dedicated to a transformation in cancer care in which treatment is informed by a deep understanding of the genomic changes that contribute to each patient's unique cancer. The company offers a full suite of comprehensive genomic profiling assays to identify the molecular alterations in a patient's cancer and match them with relevant targeted therapies, immunotherapies and clinical trials. Foundation Medicine's molecular information platform aims to improve day-to-day care for patients by serving the needs of clinicians, academic researchers and drug developers to help advance the science of molecular medicine in cancer. For more information, please visit or follow Foundation Medicine on Twitter (@FoundationATCG).

Foundation Medicine® and FoundationOne® are registered trademarks of Foundation Medicine, Inc.

About Lynparza
Lynparza (olaparib) is an innovative, first-in-class oral poly ADP-ribose polymerase (PARP) inhibitor that exploits tumour DNA damage response (DDR) pathway deficiencies to preferentially kill cancer cells. Lynparza is the foundation of AstraZeneca’s industry-leading portfolio of compounds targeting DNA damage response (DDR) mechanisms in cancer cells. Lynparza is approved in the EU for the treatment of adult patients with platinum-sensitive relapsed BRCA-mutated (germline and/or somatic) high-grade serous epithelial ovarian, fallopian tube or primary peritoneal cancer. It is approved in the US for the treatment of patients with germline BRCA-mutated advanced ovarian cancer who have been treated with three or more prior lines of chemotherapy.

About AstraZeneca in Oncology
AstraZeneca has a deep-rooted heritage in Oncology and offers a quickly growing portfolio of new medicines that has the potential to transform patients’ lives and the Company’s future. With at least 6 new medicines to be launched between 2014 and 2020 and a broad pipeline of small molecules and biologics in development, we are committed to advance New Oncology as one of AstraZeneca’s six Growth Platforms focused on lung, ovarian, breast and blood cancers. In addition to our core capabilities, we actively pursue innovative partnerships and investments that accelerate the delivery of our strategy, as illustrated by our investment in Acerta Pharma in haematology.

By harnessing the power of four scientific platforms -- immuno-oncology, the genetic drivers of cancer and resistance, DNA damage response and antibody drug conjugates -- and by championing the development of personalised combinations, AstraZeneca has the vision to redefine cancer treatment and one day eliminate cancer as a cause of death

About AstraZeneca
AstraZeneca is a global, innovation-driven biopharmaceutical business that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialisation of prescription medicines, primarily for the treatment of diseases in three main therapy areas - respiratory, inflammation, autoimmune disease (RIA), cardiovascular and metabolic disease (CVMD) and oncology – as well as in infection and neuroscience. AstraZeneca operates in over 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide. For more information please visit:


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Key: RIA - Respiratory, Inflammation and Autoimmunity, CVMD - Cardiovascular and Metabolic Disease,

ING - Infection, Neuroscience and Gastrointestinal