How Servier saved Cellectis, the French CAR-T Miracle

15/07/2015 - 5 minutes

Cellectis, the €1bn CAR-T company, just announced it reached a significant milestone in its collaboration with Servier. Surprisingly, early 2014, Cellectis and its 300 employees were only three months away from bankruptcy, mainly because of the competing gene-editing technology CRISPR. How and why did Servier save them? Let’s find out.

Cellectis was founded in 1999 in Paris and is one of the worldwide experts in gene editing. The company’s technology relies on meganuclease, an enzyme capable of cutting genomes precisely. The firm was very successful thanks to its kits sold worldwide to researchers and industrials, which led it to launch its IPO in Paris in September 2007 to raise €21,2M and to acquire the Swedish Biotech Cellartis and its 68 employees for €28M in September 2011. From then on, Cellectis showed a new face, considered one of the leading French Biotechs with almost 300 employees.

But then, CRIPSR arrived …

CRISPR is a revolutionary technology that enables precise gene editing at a very moderate price (read our review on the topic).

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