Editas Medicine and Celgene Corporation Amend Existing Collaboration to Develop and Commercialize Autologous and Allogeneic T Cell Medicines for the Treatment of Cancer and Autoimmune Diseases
- The companies will continue to collaborate to discover and develop the next generation of engineered alpha-beta T cells
- Editas Medicine to receive a $70 million payment and may be eligible for future milestone and royalty payments
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Nov. 12, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Editas Medicine, Inc. (Nasdaq: EDIT), a leading genome editing company, today announced an amended collaboration with Celgene Corporation (Nasdaq: CELG) under which the parties may research, develop, and commercialize autologous and allogeneic alpha-beta T cell medicines for the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases. Under the terms of the amended agreement, Editas Medicine will receive a payment of $70 million.
“Celgene is the leader in advancing innovative cell medicines to treat blood cancers, and we are excited to expand our productive working relationship with the Celgene team as we increase our commitment to advancing gene-edited cell medicines in oncology and beyond,” said Charles Albright, Ph.D., Executive Vice President and Chief Scientific Officer, Editas Medicine.
Under the terms of the amended agreement, Editas Medicine may develop genome editing tools and Celgene will have rights to opt-in to such genome editing tools for development of gene edited alpha-beta T cell therapies. For each new experimental medicine that Celgene develops and commercializes using opted-into genome editing tools, Celgene will pay Editas Medicine potential future milestone and royalty payments.
Albright added, “In addition to alpha-beta T cells and our work with Celgene, we are expanding our portfolio of gene editing to include multiple immune system cell types that we believe will be effective in making the next generation of allogeneic medicines to fight many common cancers, including natural killer (NK) cells derived from both healthy donors and induced pluripotent stem cells (iPSCs).”
“Edited cell therapies have the potential to transform the treatment of cancer and improve patient outcomes. In particular, editing T cells may enhance the safety and efficacy of autologous and allogeneic medicines targeting blood cancers, such as multiple myeloma and lymphoma, and also solid tumors,” said Rupert Vessey, M.A., B.M., B.Ch., F.R.C.P., D.Phil., President, Research & Early Development, Celgene. “The Celgene team continues to be impressed by the progress the Editas team has made in developing the leading technology for making CRISPR-based medicines in our initial collaboration. We look forward to this next phase of our collaboration as we drive programs from research into clinical development.”
Editas Medicine and Juno Therapeutics, Inc. (now Celgene) originally entered into a strategic research collaboration in 2015 focused on creating chimeric antigen receptor T (CAR T) and high-affinity T cell receptor (TCR) cell therapies to treat cancer. The exclusive research period under the original collaboration was set to expire in 2020. This newly amended agreement replaces the original agreement and allows Editas to develop non-alpha-beta T cell therapies, while expanding Celgene’s access to gene-edited alpha-beta T cells beyond oncology.
The Editas Medicine management team will host a conference call and webcast today at 8:00 a.m. ET to provide and discuss a corporate update and financial results for the third quarter of 2019. To access the call, please dial 844-348-3801 (domestic) or 213-358-0955 (international) and provide the passcode 6577216. A live webcast of the call will be available on the Investors & Media section of the Editas Medicine website at www.editasmedicine.com and a replay will be available approximately two hours after its completion.
About Editas Medicine
As a leading genome editing company, Editas Medicine is focused on translating the power and potential of the CRISPR/Cas9 and CRISPR/Cpf1 (also known as Cas12a) genome editing systems into a robust pipeline of treatments for people living with serious diseases around the world. Editas Medicine aims to discover, develop, manufacture, and commercialize transformative, durable, precision genomic medicines for a broad class of diseases. For the latest information and scientific presentations, please visit www.editasmedicine.com.
Editas Medicine Forward-Looking Statements
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