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Astellas, Adaptimmune To Co-Develop And Co-Commercialize T-cell Therapies

Tokyo, Japan-based Astellas Pharma Inc. (ALPMY) announced Tuesday an agreement with Adaptimmune Therapeutics plc (ADAP), which is focused on cell therapy to treat cancer, to develop up to three T-cell therapies.

Under the deal, Astellas unit Universal Cells, Inc, and Adaptimmune will co-develop and co-commercialize new stem-cell derived allogeneic T-cell therapies to people with cancer.

Under the terms, Adaptimmune will receive an upfront payment of $50 million, and may receive up to $897.5 million in payments.

Along with upfront payment, the potential payments for Adaptimmune includes development milestones totaling up to $73.75 million for each product if the collaboration product discovered in this partnership is co-developed and commercialized by both companies. It also includes up to $147.5 million in milestone payments per product and up to $110 million in sales milestones for products developed unilaterally by Astellas.

In addition, Adaptimmune will receive research funding of up to $7.5 million per year. Finally, Adaptimmune would receive tiered royalties on net sales in the mid-single to mid-teen digits.

Under the terms of the agreement, Astellas may receive up to $552.5 million, including up to $147.5 million in milestone payments per product and up to $110 million in sales milestones for products developed unilaterally by Adaptimmune. In addition, Astellas would receive tiered royalties on net sales in the mid-single to mid-teen digits.

Astellas and Adaptimmune will agree on up to three targets and co-develop T-cell therapy candidates directed to those targets. These targets will exclude target specific T-cell products in pre-clinical or clinical trials or those developed for other partners at Adaptimmune.

Astellas will fund research up until completion of a Phase 1 trial for each candidate.

The companies will each have a co-exclusive licence covering the co-development and co-commercialization of the product candidates within the field of T-cell therapy. If a candidate is developed by one company only, the appropriate licences will become exclusive to the continuing party.

On Nasdaq, Adaptimmune shares gained 200 percent on Monday's regular trading to $3.99. In the after hours trading, stock fell 5 percent to $3.80.

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