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Celgene Strikes Cancer Immunotherapy Deal With Immatics For Up To $1.59B

Shanthi Rexaline

Celgene Corporation (NASDAQ: CELG), which has agreed to be acquired by Bristol-Myers Squibb Co (NYSE: BMY), has struck a cell therapy deal with the German biotech Immatics Biotechnologies GmbH, the companies announced Wednesday. 

What Happened

Immatics, a biopharma company developing T-cell redirecting cancer immunotherapies, announced a strategic collaboration and option agreement with Celgene to develop novel adoptive cell therapies targeting multiple cancers.

If Immatics develops programs against T-cell receptor engineered T-cell, or TCR-T, targets, it will be responsible for the development and validation of these programs through the lead candidate stage, per the deal. 

Celgene can exercise opt-in rights and assumes sole responsibility for further worldwide development, manufacturing and commercialization of the TCR-T cell therapies.

The TCR-T programs are likely to be developed using Immatics' XPRESIDENT technology against solid tumor targets.

The partnership gives Immatics certain early stage co-development rights or co-funding rights for selected TCR-T-cell therapies arising from the collaboration.

"By combining Immatics' world-leading discovery engines as well as our cellular manufacturing and clinical development platforms with Celgene's broad expertise in cell therapy research, development and commercialization, the companies join forces to enable the development of truly novel opportunities for patients with solid tumors who currently have no other treatment options," Immatics CEO Harpreet Singh said in a statement. 

Financial Terms

The agreement provides for an upfront payment of $75 million to Immatics for three programs. The German company is also eligible to receive up to $505 million for each licensed product in option exercise payments, development, regulatory and commercial milestone payments as well as tiered royalties on net sales.

Price Action

Celgene shares were trading 0.32% higher at $97.01 at the time of publication Wednesday. 

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