Dr. Christian Homsy – CEO of Celyad
Dear Celyad Shareholders,
We entered into the very promising field of immuno-oncology in 2015 with the goal of offering truly transformational treatment options to patients and emerging as a world leader in cell therapy. We were pleased to announce this past Monday, July 11, that we have taken a significant step in achieving these objectives by entering into a collaboration with ONO Pharmaceutical to enhance the development of our innovative Natural Killer Receptor (NKR) based T-Cell platform.
Our license agreement with ONO Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd: an opportunity to expand Celyad’s reach globally.
We are thrilled that one of the preeminent immuno-oncology companies in the world is as excited as we are about the potential of our NKR-2 program and the opportunity this presents us to expand Celyad’s reach globally. The license agreement with ONO grants them the exclusive right to develop and commercialize our allogeneic NKR-2 T-Cell immunotherapy in Japan, Korea and Taiwan. In exchange for receiving a license in these countries, ONO will pay Celyad up to $311.5 million (plus double-digit royalties on net sales) in development and commercial milestones, including an upfront payment of $12.5 million. ONO’s impressive experience in developing and launching drugs in Asian countries, including the blockbuster PD-1 inhibitor Opdivo, significantly accelerates our progress in these new markets, which account for 10% of the world population that have access to advanced medical care, and ensures that our program is in the best position to succeed worldwide. Having such a strong regional partner allows us to concentrate on the continued development of NKR-2 for the largest opportunities in the US and EU, where we maintain full ownership and development of the entire
NKR platform. In addition to the monetary and regional benefits of the agreement, we look forward to the clinical expertise that will be shared amongst our teams, which should lead to us exploring the full potential of NKR-2 T-Cell immunotherapies worldwide. Collectively, we will also be capable of conducting global registration and combination trials.
To read the full Letter to Celyad shareholders, please click here.
Pour lire l’intégralité de la Lettre aux actionnaires de Celyad en français,cliquez ici.