Galapagos acquires CellPoint and AboundBio to accelerate access to cell therapies

DAILYPHARMA | 06.22.2022 – 16:24

Galapagos NV, CellPoint and AboundBio today announced today that they have reached an agreement with Galapagos, propelling the Belgian biopharmaceutical into next-generation cell therapies and significantly expanding its product portfolio.

Through the acquisition of CellPoint and AboundBio, Galapagos “gains access to an innovative, scalable, decentralized and automated cell therapy delivery model, as well as a state-of-the-art platform for fully human antibody-based therapies,” the company reported.

Combined and supported by Galapagos, as a fully integrated biopharmaceutical company, “they could change the paradigm of CAR-T treatment. The goal is to expand the current market for CAR-T therapies and have a significant impact on patients who need additional and improved treatment options.”

CellPoint has developed, in a strategic collaboration with Lonza, a novel delivery model that offers the ability to deliver CAR-T therapies efficiently and within 7 days, avoiding complex logistics, thus addressing important limitations of current CAR-T therapies. T. The proprietary platform consists of xCellit end-to-end workflow tracking and management software and Lonza’s Cocoon system, an automated cell and gene therapy manufacturing platform.

Clinical studies using CellPoint’s decentralized supply model have been approved by regulatory authorities in Belgium, Spain and the Netherlands. Two phase 1/2a studies are currently underway in rrNHL and rrLLC with a CD19 targeted CAR-T product candidate with first results expected in the first half of 2023, offering the opportunity for rapid clinical validation. of the CAR-T supply model. In a next step, the goal will be to leverage CellPoint’s platform for novel CAR-Ts originating from AboundBio’s unique fully human antibody-based library and biologic drug discovery and engineering capabilities, with the goal of bringing to the clinic three other differentiated candidates for next-generation CAR-T in the next three years.

“With this announcement we position ourselves as a potential innovator in CAR-T, while building a strong foundation from which to drive continued innovation for patients with advanced cancers in need of new treatment options. Our goal is to bring three differentiated next-generation CAR-T candidates to the clinic in the next three years,” says Paul Stoffels, CEO of Galapagos. “This is a key first step in our strategic transformation to accelerate and diversify our pipeline with the goal of creating short- and long-term value through external growth. We continue to explore new business development opportunities to further leverage our internal capabilities and renew our product portfolio, so later this year we expect to release an update to our corporate strategy and product portfolio. With the support of our collaborative partner Gilead, we warmly welcome the CellPoint and AboundBio teams to Galapagos, and together we look forward to bringing transformative medicines to patients around the world.”

“We are very excited to join Galapagos to accelerate the development, commercialization and scale-up of our state-of-the-art CAR-T supply model. Despite advances with current CAR-T therapies, long lead times, largely manual centralized manufacturing, and complex logistics continue to be factors that limit large-scale production and broad patient access. Our novel decentralized manufacturing and supply model is designed to address these limitations and supply CAR-T cells in the hospital setting, offering the potential to significantly shorten time to treatment to one week compared to the current industry standard. than a month,” adds Tol Trimborn, co-founder and CEO of CellPoint.

“We are delighted to join Galapagos to accelerate our research and realize the full potential of our work in science and innovation. Our state-of-the-art, fully human, multiparatopic, and multispecific CAR-T constructs offer the potential for deeper and more durable responses to treatment, as well as retreatment for relapse after prior CAR-T cell therapy. Combined with CellPoint’s decentralized delivery model, our goal is to expand patient access and ultimately change their lives. We are impressed by the leadership and expertise of Galapagos and look forward to embarking on this exciting journey together”, concludes John Mellors, CEO of AboundBio.

Under the terms of the agreements, Galapagos will acquire all of the existing shares of CellPoint and AboundBio in an all-cash transaction by paying an initial €125 million for CellPoint, with an additional €100 million upon completion. of certain milestones, and with the payment of an amount of 14 million dollars by AboundBio. The transactions have been fully executed and the acquisitions have been completed this Wednesday.

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