How Seattle Genetics Hopes to End the Cancer Menace Once and for All

People that have been to Bothell’s Cascade Business Park will tell you that nothing about the beige group of buildings indicates that they are the headquarters of one of the largest clinical trials company in the world. The only telltale sign that one gets as they enter the building is that triangular structure that many mistake for a Greek cred. The reality is that the structure is a simplified model of the human antibody, the central focus of all the studies carried out by Seattle Genetics. They have been developing antibodies and packaging them into a therapy that has proven itself very successful in delivering a lethal dose to cancer and destroying it from within.

Seattle Genetics has more than 900 employees and an asset base of more than $10 billion. This makes the company one of the largest Biotechs in Seattle. Some people fear that as the company continues catapulting into the big leagues, they may graduate into big pharma and leave Seattle behind as Ammunex did after its acquisition, but the founder, CEO and Board Chairman, Clay Siegall seems sure that the company is there to stay. The company is hoping to recruit more than 200 new employees this year alone, which is another indication that the company is well past their hardship days.

The fortunes seem to have changed for Seattle Genetics when their drug, Adcetris got a nod from the FDA. The drug mainly treats Hodgkin Lymphoma, which is a lymph cancer that can spread to several other parts of the body. In addition to the drug, Seattle Genetics has about 11 more which are in different stages of development. It is an indication that the company wants to build a brand and presence as opposed to selling out to bigger companies, which is common among other biotech companies.

Siegall is an ambitious leader, when he started out at Seattle, lack of capital to inject into the research of Adcetris forced him to sell rights to Takeda Pharmaceuticals. But he has opened a branch in Switzerland with the hope that the company will manage to market their brand internationally. Currently, the company is listed on NASDAQ as SGEN and has been trading their shares publicly for a while now. It is easy to see that with the leadership of Clay Siegall, Seattle Genetics will achieve a lot in cancer research and provision of treatments and therapies.