Osaka, Japan and London, UK, May 9, 2017 - Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (TSE: 4502) and GammaDelta Therapeutics Ltd, an Abingworth portfolio company, announced today that they have formed a strategic collaboration to develop GammaDelta Therapeutics’ novel T cell platform, which is based on the unique properties of gamma delta (γδ) T cells derived from human tissues. The companies intend to use this novel platform to discover and develop new immunotherapies, with the aim of treating a broad range of cancers, including solid tumours, and autoinflammatory diseases.
“The pioneering research developed by Professor Adrian Hayday and Dr. Oliver Nussbaumer at King’s College London and the Francis Crick Institute, the scientific founders of our company, forms the basis for the development of potentially transformational treatments for cancer and autoinflammatory diseases,” said Dr Paolo Paoletti, MD, CEO of GammaDelta Therapeutics. “We believe the collaboration with Takeda validates our novel approach and should allow us to move rapidly to the clinic.”
Takeda, together with Abingworth, will commit up to $100 million in funding to accelerate GammaDelta Therapeutics led Research and Development. The funding includes an equity investment, an option fee and research and development funding, and provides Takeda the exclusive right to purchase GammaDelta Therapeutics. Under the agreement, Takeda will appoint a director to GammaDelta Therapeutics’ board.
“At Takeda, we recognize the enormous potential of tissue resident γδ T cells to deliver transformative medicines in our core therapeutic areas of oncology and gastroenterology,” said Daniel Curran, MD, Head of the Center for External Innovation, Takeda. “This collaboration is another example of our strategy to invest in highly innovative areas of science and we’re pleased to collaborate with the experienced team at GammaDelta Therapeutics as they aim to take a leadership position in this rapidly emerging field.”
“We are delighted by the progress GammaDelta Therapeutics has made since we founded the company in 2016,” said Tim Haines, Managing Partner at Abingworth and a Director at GammaDelta Therapeutics. “This collaboration with Takeda will enable the company to advance the development of this exciting technology, which has the potential to address significant unmet needs in cancer and autoinflammatory diseases.”
Takeda signed certain of the agreements with GammaDelta Therapeutics through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
About GammaDelta Therapeutics
GammaDelta Therapeutics is working to develop improved immunotherapies for cancer and other serious diseases. The company’s research and development is focused on exploiting the unique properties of tissue resident gamma delta (γδ) T cells, which are a unique and conserved population of lymphocytes that contribute to many types of immune responses and immunopathology.
GammaDelta Therapeutics was founded in 2016 by Abingworth with support from Cancer Research Technology Limited based on research undertaken by Professor Adrian Hayday and Dr Oliver Nussbaumer at King’s College London and the Francis Crick Institute. The company’s offices and laboratories are located at the London BioScience Innovation Centre, London.
About Takeda Pharmaceutical Company
Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited is a global, research and development-driven pharmaceutical company committed to bringing better health and a brighter future to patients by translating science into life-changing medicines. Takeda focuses its R&D efforts on oncology, gastroenterology and central nervous system therapeutic areas plus vaccines. Takeda conducts R&D both internally and with partners to stay at the leading edge of innovation. New innovative products, especially in oncology and gastroenterology, as well as Takeda’s presence in Emerging Markets, are currently fueling the growth of Takeda. More than 30,000 Takeda employees are committed to improving quality of life for patients, working with Takeda’s partners in health care in more than 70 countries. For more information, visit http://www.takeda.com/newsroom.
Takeda’s Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains “forward-looking statements.” Forward-looking statements include all statements other than statements of historical fact, including plans, strategies and expectations for the future. Statements made in the future tense, and words such as “anticipate,” “expect,” “project,” “continue,” “believe,” “plan,” “estimate,” “pro forma,” “intend,” “potential,” “target,” “forecast,” “guidance,” “outlook,” “seek,” “assume,” “will,” “may,” “should,” and similar expressions are intended to qualify as forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on estimates and assumptions made by management that are believed to be reasonable, though they are inherently uncertain and difficult to predict. Investors and security holders are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements.
Forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results or experience to differ materially from that expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Some of these risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: competitive pressures and developments; applicable laws and regulations; the success or failure of product development programs; actions of regulatory authorities and the timing thereof; changes in exchange rates; and claims or concerns regarding the safety or efficacy of marketed products or product candidates in development.
The forward-looking statements contained in this press release speak only as of the date of this press release, and neither GammaDelta Therapeutics nor Takeda undertake any obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statements to reflect new information, future events or circumstances after the date of the forward-looking statement. If one or more of these statements is updated or corrected, investors and others should not conclude that additional updates or corrections will be made.
Abingworth is an international investment group dedicated to collaborating with life sciences entrepreneurs to develop their ideas into products that have a dramatic impact on health. With over $1 billion under management, Abingworth invests at all stages of development, from start-ups to publicly traded companies, and across all life science sectors.
Supporting its portfolio companies with a team of 27 at offices in London, Menlo Park (California) and Boston, Abingworth has invested in 142 life science companies, leading to 64 IPOs and 40 mergers and acquisitions. www.abingworth.com
GammaDelta Therapeutics Ltd:
Director of Intellectual Property, Alliance Management and Business Development
Paolo Paoletti, MD
T: +44 (0) 207 691 1122
Tsuyoshi Tada – Japan
Kelly Schlemm – USA