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5 November, 2018 - 12:12 By Tony Quested

Crescendo draws early millions from $754m Takeda well

Cambridge drug developer Crescendo Biologics has won a lucrative payment from Japanese pharma giant Takeda as part of a partnership potentially worth $754m.

Business Weekly understands the decision by Takeda to exercise an option under the  existing, multi-target collaboration and licensing agreement is worth several million dollars to the UK innovator. The partners decline to issue any figures.

Crescendo, which is based at Babraham Research Campus, is developing novel, targeted T-cell enhancing therapeutics. Takeda has taken an exclusive licence to Humabodies directed to one of its oncology targets.

The licence option exercise comes substantially earlier than planned and marks the highly successful delivery and further pre-clinical evaluation by Takeda of Humabody® leads meeting its stringent criteria. 

Crescendo CEO Dr Peter Pack said: “The team at Crescendo has made great progress on our Humabody programmes, working closely with the Takeda team. 

“To date, we have met all the technical milestones on time or earlier than planned, which is proof of our excellent collaboration. We are delighted that the option to license has been taken by Takeda ahead of schedule and look forward to further future successes.”

Chris Arendt, Head, Oncology Drug Discovery Unit & Immunology Unit, Takeda, added: “At Takeda, we continue to research diverse modalities to bring transformative treatments to patients with cancer.

“Our decision to exercise the licence was based on the quality of the Humabody leads and the potential we see to develop improved and differentiated immuno-oncology therapies.”

The existing multi-target collaboration and licence agreement was announced in October 2016. Takeda received the right to develop and commercialise Humabody®-based therapeutics resulting from the collaboration. 

Crescendo is eligible to receive clinical development, regulatory and sales-based milestone payments of up to $754 million plus royalties on Humabody®-based product sales by Takeda.

• PHOTOGRAPH SHOWS: Crescendo CEO Dr Peter Pack

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