Venture Funding Deals, October 2015
This article was originally published in Start Up
Derived from Strategic Transactions, Informa’s premium source for tracking life sciences deal activity, the Venture Funding Deals column provides a comprehensive monthly review of emerging life science companies that have received venture funding, including companies within the In Vitro Diagnostics, Medical Devices, and Pharmaceuticals sectors. This month’s column covers deals announced August through September 2015.
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Private Company Edition: Flagship’s Pioneering Medicines initiative and the firm’s portfolio companies will deliver cystic fibrosis drug candidates. Also, recent venture capital financings include cloud technology firm Saama’s $430m round and Shoreline’s $140m in new funding.
In the top August alliance by deal value, Precision BioSciences licensed Imugene global rights to azercabtagene zapreleucel (azer-cel), its lead allogeneic anti-CD19 CAR T candidate for cancer. Imugene will assume ongoing clinical execution for azer-cel in the large B-cell lymphoma population who have relapsed following autologous CAR T treatment. The license also includes an option to develop up to three other cancer research programs in the future. Precision will receive $21m up front and is eligible for $8m upon successful completion of the Phase Ib dosing in the CAR T relapsed LBCL patient population. For azer-cel, Precision is eligible to receive up to $198m in additional milestone payments plus royalties. For each additional research program selected by Imugene, Precision is eligible for up to $145m in milestone payments and tiered royalties on net sales.
Eight $1bn+ alliances were penned in July. Topping the list was a potential $2.8bn deal under which Alnylam granted Roche exclusive global rights outside the US to develop and commercialize its Phase II hypertension candidate zilebesiran. The companies will co-develop zilebesiran in the US.