Bayer Schering PharmaBayer Schering Pharma AG, Germany, has acquired an exclusive option for a collaboration and licensing agreement with Micromet, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing antibodies for the treatment of cancer, inflammation and autoimmune diseases. Bayer Schering Pharma will pay Micromet a 4.5 million Euro fee to secure a one-year option on a specific BiTE antibody.

Exercising this option prior to January 5, 2010 through an additional payment would trigger a joint collaboration on the development of the BiTE antibody against a solid tumour target through the completion of Phase I clinical trials, at which point Bayer Schering Pharma would assume full control of the further development and commercialization of the antibody. Micromet would be eligible for an option exercise fee and milestone payments of up to 290 million Euro in total and up to double-digit royalties based on tiered net sales of the product.

"Oncology is one of our core growth areas and biologicals are a key focus of our strategy. We are excited about Micromet's BiTE antibody technology and believe BiTE antibodies represent a novel and promising approach to cancer therapy," said Andreas Busch, Member of the Board of Management of Bayer Schering Pharma AG responsible for Global Drug Discovery.

"We are very pleased with Bayer's interest in this preclinical BiTE antibody programme and their financial commitment to secure exclusive access for the next 12 months. This deal represents further validation of BiTE antibody technology by a major oncology company," said Christian Itin, Micromet's chief executive officer.

The Bayer Group is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, nutrition and high-tech materials. Bayer HealthCare, a subsidiary of Bayer AG, is one of the world's leading, innovative companies in the healthcare and medical products industry and is based in Leverkusen, Germany.

Bayer Schering Pharma is a worldwide leading specialty pharmaceutical company. Its research and business activities are focused on the following areas: Diagnostic Imaging, General Medicine, Specialty Medicine and Women's Healthcare.