GentiBio, Inc. has entered into a collaboration with Bristol Myers Squibb to develop new engineered regulatory T cells (Treg) therapies to re-establish immune tolerance and repair tissue in patients living with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD).
The collaboration brings together GentiBio’s engineered Treg platform for generating scalable, stable, highly-selective, and durable Tregs with Bristol Myers Squibb’s capacity in cell therapies and immunology.
During the multi-year collaboration, GentiBio will apply its modular engineered Treg platform and scalable manufacturing process to produce stable and disease-specific engineered Tregs against multiple targets. Bristol Myers Squibb will have the right to develop and advance up to three of the resulting programs into clinical trials.
“We are thrilled to collaborate with Bristol Myers Squibb, a global leader in cell therapy and immunology drug development, to bring critically-needed, disease-modifying therapies to IBD patients,” said Adel Nada, co-founder and CEO of GentiBio.
“Unlike existing therapies, Tregs have the unique potential to re-establish immune tolerance in autoimmune and inflammatory diseases such as IBD. This strategic collaboration reflects our shared commitment to creating innovative immunotherapies that are designed to be potent, durable, selective and have the potential to significantly shift the standard of care for patients with autoimmune and autoinflammatory diseases.”
IBD is characterized by debilitating and life-threatening chronic inflammation of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Current therapies are largely focused on systemic anti-inflammatory agents and broad immunosuppression, which can have adverse effects outside the GI tract.
“Tregs have demonstrated the potential to suppress inflammation and autoimmune dysfunction in a tissue-restricted manner, thus avoiding widespread, and potentially harmful, immune suppression,” said Robert Plenge, Bristol Myers Squibb senior vice president and head, immunology, cardiovascular and fibrosis thematic research center and head, translational medicine.
“We are excited to collaborate with GentiBio as we explore creating potentially promising Tregs for patients suffering from IBD.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Bristol Myers Squibb made an undisclosed upfront cash payment to GentiBio. GentiBio is eligible to receive development and sales milestone payments of up to $1.9 billion and royalties.