Gilead and Arcus in Oncology Pact
Gilead Sciences has entered a 10-year partnership with oncology-focused biopharma Arcus Biosciences to develop and commercialize current and future therapeutic candidates in Arcus’s pipeline.
The collaboration will include AB154, an investigational anti-TIGIT monoclonal antibody, along with AB928, an investigational A2aR/A2bR antagonist, and zimberelimab (AB122), an investigational anti-PD-1 monoclonal antibody.
The US biotech will also provide ongoing funding of up to $400 million to support Arcus’s research and development programs over the term of the agreement
“By gaining access to its broad, diverse pipeline and Arcus’s clear strengths in discovery and development, we believe that our partnership with Arcus will significantly accelerate our progress in developing transformative new therapies for cancer,” said Gilead’s chairman and CEO Daniel O’Day.
The transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2020. Upon completion, Gilead will have the right to appoint two people to Arcus’s board of directors.
Under the terms of the arrangement, Gilead will pay Arcus $375 million upon closing, consisting of $175 million upfront and an equity investment of $200 million. It will also be required to give Arcus up to $1.225 billion in opt-in and milestone payments on the biopharma’s current clinical candidates and provide ongoing R&D support of up to $400 million over the term of the collaboration.
Gilead will gain the right to opt-in to all other programs that emerge from Arcus’ research portfolio over the next 10 years, upon payment of $150 million per program. In addition, it will have the right to buy additional Arcus shares, up to a maximum of 35% of the outstanding voting stock over the next five years.
Arcus CEO Terry Rosen said the partnership structure facilitates his company’s path to becoming an independent, fully integrated biopharmaceutical producer.
Last month, Gilead signed non-exclusive licensing agreements with five generic drugmakers with production plants in India and Pakistan to further expand supplies of remdesivir, its drug being trialed in the US to treat Covid-19.