Clarivate Identifies Seven Innovators in Antibody Drug Conjugates in New Companies to Watch Report

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Emerging standouts set to transform drug discovery and development, revolutionize cancer treatment, and capture big pharma interest highlighted in third annual report

LONDON, June 19, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Clarivate Plc (NYSE:CLVT), a leading global provider of transformative intelligence, has released its annual Companies to Watch report, highlighting seven innovative companies revolutionizing drug discovery and development. These companies are advancing antibody-drug conjugates (ADCs) to deliver highly targeted cancer treatments with minimal side effects. Based on data, insights and analysis of drug benefits, financing and R&D activity, the report explores why these companies are significant innovators. While this year’s report focuses on ADCs, previous editions highlighted RNA technology companies and AI/ML companies to watch. Impressively, eleven of the fourteen companies previously featured have completed significant transactions or raised substantial new funds, including DTx Pharma, AQEMIA, and Quris-AI.

Major pharmaceutical companies are eager to partner with or acquire ADC developers to enhance their oncology pipelines. ADCs combine a cytotoxic payload, a monoclonal antibody (mAb), and a chemical linker, offering greater target specificity and a wider therapeutic index than traditional therapies, delivering toxic agents directly to cancer cells while sparing healthy tissues.

Mike Ward, Global Head of Life Sciences and Healthcare Thought Leadership, Clarivate, said: “Our data and insights reveal a clear trend: Big Pharma is swiftly integrating ADCs into their portfolios through partnerships and acquisitions. ADCs are rapidly maturing in the clinical space, expanding beyond oncology into diverse therapeutic areas. In the past five years, the number of ADCs on the global market has surged into double digits, showcasing their growing impact and potential in modern medicine. This year’s Companies to Watch report highlights ADC companies that might still be under the radar.”

Historically, ADC development has been slow due to the complexity of selecting the right components for stability, specificity, and effective payload delivery. Challenges such as potential degradation during storage, balancing bioavailability, and specific manufacturing infrastructure have also impeded progress. However, more than a dozen ADC therapies have received global approval and contract development manufacturing organizations (CDMOs) are assisting with manufacturing challenges. The companies in this report are using innovative approaches to overcome these challenges, paving the way for ADCs to become a cornerstone in modern oncology treatment. This year’s Companies to Watch include:

  • Adcendo ApS develops breakthrough ADCs targeting the uPARAP receptor, highly expressed in various mesenchymal and epithelial cancers. Adcendo aims to replace conventional chemotherapy with targeted, personalized treatments that have fewer side effects.
  • Araris Biotech AG utilizes proprietary conjugation technology and linker-payload platforms to advance next-generation ADCs. Araris’ one-step, site-specific drug attachment technology stably accommodates various drug-load combinations without altering the antibody’s pharmacokinetic profile, aiming to create more efficacious and less toxic ADC cancer treatments.
  • GO Therapeutics leverages advances in glycoproteomics to develop antibody-based therapies against clean glycoprotein cancer targets. Its platform-based approach uses selectively targeted O-glycoproteins that could deliver more treatments for patients with many different types of cancer.
  • Heidelberg Pharma AG employs its proprietary ATAC® technology, using amanitin-based compounds as the ADC payload. As the first to utilize amanitin for cancer therapy, Heidelberg Pharma’s approach targets RNA polymerase II to induce apoptosis, offering treatment options with improved therapeutic indices and fewer side effects.
  • Pheon Therapeutics focuses on extending the benefits of ADCs through novel oncology targets and proprietary linker-payload technologies. Their development strategy focuses on a novel target that is broadly overexpressed in multiple solid tumor types. Pheon’s lead program for solid tumors, PHN-010, is set to enter the clinical stage in 2024, offering a potential treatment with better efficacy and tolerability.
  • Tallac Therapeutics, Inc. employs next-generation ADC technology with novel oligonucleotide payloads to create antibody-oligonucleotide conjugates (AOCs). Their TRAAC platform uses a potent Toll-like receptor agonist for targeted immune activation within the tumor microenvironment. Tallac’s AOCs aim to provide precision medicines with less toxicity and more durable therapeutic profiles for patients with solid tumors.
  • Tubulis has a mission to realize the true therapeutic potential of ADCs. The company’s proprietary Tub-tag® and P5 conjugation platforms deliver diverse targeted anti-cancer agents, with stable linkers, to tumor sites, minimizing offsite toxicities. Tubulis’ lead candidates, TUB-040 and TUB-030, target specific antigens in ovarian, lung, and other solid tumors, aiming to provide safer and more effective treatment options.

Successful innovation relies on overcoming inherent challenges with ADCs. Addressing these challenges requires interdisciplinary collaboration, innovative technologies and continuous investment in research and development to advance the field of ADCs and realize their full therapeutic potential in oncology and other disease areas.

To learn more about the Companies to Watch report, visit here.

For more Drugs to Watch updates and analyses throughout the year, visit the Drugs to Watch web page and follow Clarivate for Life Sciences & Healthcare on and LinkedIn.

Methodology for the Companies to Watch Report

Clarivate analysts assessed the changing ADC landscape with a variety of proprietary data sources, including: BioWorldCortellis Clinical Trials Intelligence™, Cortellis Deals Intelligence™, Cortellis Drug Discovery Intelligence™, OFF-X™, and other industry sources such as company announcements, filings and peer-reviewed publications. In selecting this year’s ADC Companies to Watch, companies were weighted according to factors, such as: medical, business and scientific challenges these companies are attempting to solve; patient unmet need and/or burden of disease their solutions aim to address; demonstrated proof of concept and achievement of key developmental milestones; positioning in clinical trials; relationships with notable scientific and academic institutions; financial positioning, including funding secured, relationships with industry and institutional investors, financial runway and prospects for future fundraising or partnerships; and ownership and status of intellectual property (IP) estate. These and other Clarivate data sources provide high-quality, curated data for proprietary AI capabilities from Clarivate that form the mainstay of our intelligence solutions and services, including advanced search algorithms, bespoke consulting and predictive analytics (e.g., Drug Timeline & Success Rates™).

Please note, Clarivate generated data featured in this report reflects findings prior to April 2024. The Companies to Watch 2024 ADC report is based on current expectations reflective of analysis by Clarivate of the data available, but actual results derived from companies featured in the Report and herein may differ.

About Clarivate

Clarivate™ is a leading global provider of transformative intelligence. We offer enriched data, insights & analytics, workflow solutions and expert services in the areas of Academia & Government, Intellectual Property and Life Sciences & Healthcare. For more information, please visit

Media Contact:

Catherine Daniel

Director External Communications, Life Sciences & Healthcare, Clarivate

[email protected]

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