Celgene and Jounce in $2.6-bn Immuno-Oncology Collaboration Deal
Celgene and Jounce Therapeutics are to join in a global strategic collaboration with the aim of developing and commercialising immuno-oncology treatments.
The collaboration will provide Celgene the options to jointly develop and commercialise Jounce’s primary product candidate, JTX-2011, and other innovative immunotherapies targeting B cells, T regulatory cells and tumor-associated macrophages.
In return, Jounce will potentially receive an upfront payment of $225 million, a $36 million equity investment, and up to an additional $2.3 billion in future milestone payments across all programmes included in the partnership.
JTX-2011 is a monoclonal antibody that binds to and activates ICOS, the Inducible T cell CO-Stimulator, a protein on the surface of certain T cells that is believed to stimulate an immune response against a patient’s cancer.
The drug is being developed to treat solid tumours as a single agent and in combination with other therapies, and is expected to enter the clinic in the second half of this year.
“Jounce has built a unique immuno-oncology platform and pipeline with a focus on the development of novel cancer therapies matched to patient populations most likely to respond,” said Robert Hershberg, Celgene’s chief scientific officer.
“This collaboration allows both companies to leverage broad capabilities in immuno-oncology to bring forward a new generation of product candidates for cancer patients.”