Starpharma’s DEP® technology provides enhanced therapeutic benefits
to ADCs over conventional ADC approaches

The use of ADCs is an innovative and cutting-edge area in cancer therapy that continues to grow. Targeted DEP® conjugates (DEP®  ADC’s) are an exciting and valuable application of Starpharma’s DEP® platform and the basis of internal development activities and a number of partner programs in the area.

Starpharma’s DEP® ADC’s provide many benefits over existing ADCs and can overcome many issues faced today by existing ADC approaches, including:

  • Greater homogeneity
  • Site specific attachment of drug conjugate
  • High affinity
  • The delivery of significantly higher payload levels than conventional ADCs
  • Overcome issues of payload solubility and aggregation.

Starpharma’s DEP® technology represents a valuable partnering platform which has the potential to generate revenue through royalties and milestones.

Starpharma has a number of partnerships with leading antibody drug conjugate companies.

Starpharma’s DEP®  ADC’s have multiple benefits over conventional ADC approaches:

  1. Flexibility in use of wide range of targeting molecules including full antibodies, antibody fragment, non-antibody targeting group including small molecules.
  2. Readily scalable - precisely manufactured poly-lysine dendrimer with attached drug/payload
  3. Dendrimer size can be modified to achieve delivery of variable payload number (4, 8,16, 32...) per dendrimer conjugate.
  4. Dendrimers allow site specific attachment of dendrimer to targeting group.
  5. Dendrimers are suited to delivery of a wide range of payloads – expanding applications of DEP® ADCs beyond cancer.
  6. Dendrimers allow use of a wide variety of drug linkers- tailored to meet desired drug release requirements.
  7. Dendrimers can deliver significant increases in solubility and formulation benefits.

DEP® ADC deliver efficacy improvements vs conventional ADCs and antibody therapies

Starpharma’s novel HER-2 targeted DEP® ADC binds to the same target (HER-2) as the leading monoclonal antibody cancer therapy, Herceptin®, which had 2019 sales in excess of US$6 billion. Sales of another HER-2 ADC, Kadcyla, had sales of ~$1.6 billion in 2019.

In preclinical studies, Starpharma’s HER-2 targeted DEP® ADC demonstrated significant tumour regression and 100% survival in a preclinical human ovarian cancer model and significantly outperformed leading HER-2 products, Kadcyla®, a HER-2 targeted ADC, and Herceptin® itself.

The images below illustrate that Starpharma’s HER-2 targeted DEP® ADC penetrates deep into the tumour (left) and then binds and is internalised into tumour cells (right) for antitumour effect. 

DEP® ADCs: a new approach to ADC design  


Partnering opportunities - contact:
Tony Eglezos
VP Business Development
T: +61 3 8532 2700