Sosei Subsidiary Heptares and AstraZeneca Enter Agreement to Develop Novel Immuno-Oncology Treatments for a Range of Cancers

TOKYO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Sosei Group Corporation (TOKYO:4565) is pleased to announce that its
wholly-owned subsidiary Heptares Therapeutics (“Heptares”) and
AstraZeneca have entered into a licensing agreement under which
AstraZeneca will acquire exclusive global rights to develop, manufacture
and commercialise the adenosine A2A receptor antagonist,
HTL-1071, a small molecule immuno-oncology candidate, and potential
additional A2A receptor-blocking compounds. AstraZeneca will
focus on exploring HTL-1071 and any additional compounds across a range
of cancers, including in combination with its existing portfolio of
immunotherapies.

Tumour cells have evolved mechanisms to evade the immune system,
including through the production of a natural molecule called adenosine.
By stimulating A2A receptors, adenosine stops T-cells within
the immune system from proliferating and reduces their ability to
destroy cancer cells. Blocking A2A receptors can therefore
promote the anti-cancer response of T-cells within in the tumour
microenvironment.

Under the terms of the agreement, Heptares will grant AstraZeneca an
exclusive license to research, develop, manufacture and commercialise
HTL-1071. The companies will also collaborate to discover further A2A
receptor-blocking compounds for development in cancer immunotherapy.

Heptares will receive an upfront payment of $10 million and is eligible
to receive additional, significant near term milestone payments based on
agreed pre-clinical and/or clinical events. Subject to successful
completion of development and commercialisation milestones, Heptares is
also eligible to receive more than $500 million, as well as up to
double-digit tiered royalties on net sales.

Susan Galbraith, Vice President, Head of Oncology in AstraZeneca’s
Innovative Medicines and Early Development Unit said: “We are pleased to
expand our successful collaboration with Heptares into the exciting area
of immuno-oncology research. By combining the pioneering A2A
receptor programme with the strength of AstraZeneca’s existing oncology
portfolio, we hope to develop novel treatments with the potential to
transform the lives of patients.”

Malcolm Weir, Chief Executive Officer of Heptares said: “The A2A
receptor programme at Heptares has been an outstanding example of our
Structure Based Drug Design approach in action, resulting in a novel
clinical candidate, HTL-1071, with a highly attractive profile. Heptares
is targeting G-protein-coupled receptors that play a key role in cancer
biology through the identification of both antibody and small molecule
therapeutics. We are delighted to be entering this expanding field by
partnering with AstraZeneca, an innovative leader in the field of cancer
immunotherapy. This agreement further builds on our successful existing
research collaboration.”

This transaction is subject to customary clearances under the
Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act.

Notes to Editors

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 cardiovascular, metabolic, respiratory, inflammation,
autoimmune, oncology, infection and neuroscience diseases. AstraZeneca
operates in over 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by
millions of patients worldwide. For more information please visit: www.astrazeneca.com.

About Sosei
Sosei is a biopharmaceutical company originating
from Japan but with global presence. Sosei’s primary business model is
based on identifying novel and/or differentiated product assets or
technology platforms and, through supporting these in preclinical and
clinical development and establishing commercial partnerships, advancing
new medicines to patients worldwide. For more information about Sosei,
please visit www.sosei.com/en/.

About Heptares Therapeutics
Heptares is a clinical-stage
company creating transformative medicines targeting G protein-coupled
receptors (GPCRs), a superfamily of 375 receptors linked to a wide range
of human diseases. Heptares proprietary structure-based drug design
technology enables us to engineer drugs for highly validated, yet
historically undruggable or challenging, GPCRs. Using this approach, we
have built an exciting pipeline of new medicines with the potential to
transform the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia, ADHD,
migraine, addiction, metabolic disease, and other indications. Our
pharmaceutical partners include AstraZeneca, MedImmune, Cubist,
MorphoSys and Takeda. Heptares is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sosei
Group Corporation. For more information, please visit www.heptares.com
and www.sosei.com/en/.
HEPTARES
is a registered trademark in the EU, Switzerland, US and Japan;

StaR®
is a registered trademark in the EU and Japan.

Forward-looking statements
This press release contains
forward-looking statements, including statements about the discovery,
development and commercialisation of products. Various risks may cause
Sosei’s actual results to differ materially from those expressed or
implied by the forward-looking statements, including: adverse results in
clinical development programmes; failure to obtain patent protection for
inventions; commercial limitations imposed by patents owned or
controlled by third parties; dependence upon strategic alliance partners
to develop and commercialise products and services; difficulties or
delays in obtaining regulatory approvals to market products and services
resulting from development efforts; the requirement for substantial
funding to conduct research and development and to expand
commercialisation activities; and product initiatives by competitors. As
a result of these factors, prospective investors are cautioned not to
rely on any forward-looking statements. We disclaim any intention or
obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether
as a result of new information, future events or otherwise
.

Contacts

Enquiries:
Sosei Group Corporation
Tokyo Office
Milica
STOJKOVIC, +81-(0)3-5210-3399
Corporate Communication
mstojkovic@sosei.com
London
Office
Kathryn LYDON, +44-(0)20-7691-0983
Corporate
Communication
klydon@sosei.com

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