Gilead Sciences, Inc. (GILD) announced Tuesday that it will acquire a 49.9 percent equity interest in Pionyr Immunotherapeutics Inc., a privately held company developing first-in-class cancer immunotherapies, for $275 million. It also has an exclusive option to purchase the remainder of Pionyr.
Under the agreement, Pionyr’s shareholders may receive up to an additional $1.47 billion in option exercise fees and future milestone payments.
Pionyr is pursuing promising, novel biology in the field of immuno-oncology. Its Myeloid Tuning therapies have the potential to treat patients who currently do not benefit from checkpoint inhibitor therapies. PY314 and PY159 have demonstrated preclinical efficacy, suggesting potential in solid tumors in combination with established anti-PD(L)-1 agents.
Pionyr plans to file investigational new drug (IND) applications with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for both PY314 and PY159 in the third quarter of this year.
Pending Phase 1b results from either candidate or sooner if Gilead chooses, Gilead can exercise its exclusive option to acquire the remainder of Pionyr for a $315 million option exercise fee and up to $1.15 billion in potential future milestone payments.
In addition, Gilead will provide Pionyr with additional funding for the PY314 and PY159 clinical programs, as well as ongoing research and development programs.
The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions and is expected to close shortly. Gilead will have the right to nominate one individual to Pionyr’s Board of Directors upon closing of the transaction.
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