Cormorant Pharmaceuticals is a newly founded biopharmaceutical company specializing in the development of innovative medicines for diseases with a large unmet medical need.

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Test tubes

Our Product

Our first product in development is HuMax-IL8,  a medicine that inhibits the effects of interleukin 8 (IL-8), a chemokine that was recently shown to be an important target for cancer stem cells in several cancers, including breast, colorectal and liver cancer. We intend to start clinical testing in cancer patients during 2014.

Read more about cancer stem cells and IL-8 and HuMax-IL8.


Interleukin-8 is a factor that has been shown to be involved in the progression of many cancer forms by stimulating cancer growth, angiogensis and metastais. Recent research has also shown that IL-8 plays an important role in epithelial mesenchymal transition (EMT) as well as cancer stem cell renewal.

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Present day

Cancer treatment outcomes have improved substantially over the last decades, but many forms of cancer are still incurable if detected too late. There is a large medical need for improved therapies for those patients. Targeting cancer stem cells holds up the potential to improve on current treatment outcomes by reducing the risk of treatment failure and recurrence of the disease.

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Our solution

With our first Product in development, HuMax-IL8, we are targeting cancer spread and cancer stem cells. HuMax-IL8 is a fully human antibody targeting interleukin-8. The antibody binds IL-8 with high affinity and specificity and has been through pre-clinical dvelopment as well as a phase I/II trial in patients.

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Our vision

Our vision for HuMax-IL8 is that the inhibition of IL-8 will target the aggressive behaviour of cancer cells and cancer stem cells in several cancer forms. This will then increase the efficacy of existing cancer therapies as well as reduce the resistance to them. This will in turn lead to better disease control and fewer recurrencies.

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Recent stories


Treatment with IL-8 antibody inhibits bone metastasis in breast cancer model

Bone metastases will develop in 80% of patients with metastatic breast cancer. A recent study showed that IL-8 levels are higher in patients with bone metastases. There was also a correlation between plasma IL-8 levels and degree of bone resorption. Treatment with an IL-8 neutralising antibody in a mouse model of bone metastasis led to […]

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Resistance to targeted therapies can be due to IL-8 signaling

A recent review highlights the crosstalk between pathways important for breast cancer development, including PI3K (or mTOR), HER2, JAK2 and IL-8, that have been described in a number of recent papers. Upregulation of IL-8 signaling has been shown to be a mechanism underlying resistance to PI3K inhibitors as well as HER2 targeting agents. The article goes on to […]

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