BRISBANE, Calif. & CAMBRIDGE, Mass. & OSAKA, Japan--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Maverick Therapeutics Inc., an MPM Capital portfolio company, and Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited (TSE:4502) announced today that they have entered a collaboration to develop Maverick’s T-cell engagement platform created specifically to improve the utility of T-cell redirection therapy for the treatment of cancer. The $125 million of funding includes an upfront option, equity and research and development funding payments, and provides Takeda the exclusive right to purchase Maverick after five years for an undisclosed sum. Maverick was founded in 2016.
“We believe that this collaboration validates Maverick’s approach to T-cell engagement in the tumor microenvironment which we believe will allow us to address previously intractable oncology targets,” said Jeanmarie Guenot, Ph.D., Maverick’s co-founder. “Importantly, this strong collaboration should allow us to move rapidly to the clinic and address unmet needs in cancer immunotherapy.”
“We see significant potential in Maverick to develop unique, small and customizable T-cell engagement therapeutics,” said Phil Rowlands, Interim Head, Oncology Therapeutic Area Unit, Takeda. “Collaborations are critical to helping us advance our aspiration of curing cancer. Working together with Maverick will enable us to leverage a potentially groundbreaking biologics platform to support Takeda’s goal of developing innovative, targeted therapies to treat people with cancer.”
MPM’s BioVentures 2014 and the UBS Oncology Impact Fund, managed by MPM Capital, join Takeda in a $23 million Series B Financing as a key element of the financing package. Takeda will add a director to Maverick’s Board. The management team of Maverick will be led by President and Chief Scientific Officer Hans-Peter Gerber, Ph.D., formerly of Pfizer.
Takeda signed agreements with Maverick Therapeutics through its wholly-owned subsidiary, Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
About Maverick Therapeutics
Maverick Therapeutics is a private start-up biotechnology company that had been solely financed by MPM Capital. Maverick was spun out of its former parent, Harpoon Therapeutics, Inc., during 2016. Maverick’s novel T-cell engagement format has the potential to eliminate the toxicity challenges inherent in the use of T-cell redirection therapy due to expression of the target antigen on normal tissue. Maverick’s therapeutic antibodies are designed to be inactive upon administration but fully active in the tumor microenvironment. Maverick was founded by Jeanmarie Guenot, Ph.D., MPM founder Luke Evnin, Ph.D., and Patrick Baeuerle, Ph.D., an internationally renowned cancer immunologist and an acknowledged leader in the T-cell redirection field.
About Takeda Pharmaceutical Company
Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited is a global, research and development-driven pharmaceutical company committed to bringing better health and a brighter future to patients by translating science into life-changing medicines. Takeda focuses its R&D efforts on oncology, gastroenterology and central nervous system therapeutic areas plus vaccines. Takeda conducts R&D both internally and with partners to stay at the leading edge of innovation. New innovative products, especially in oncology and gastroenterology, as well as our presence in Emerging Markets, fuel the growth of Takeda. More than 30,000 Takeda employees are committed to improving quality of life for patients, working with our partners in health care in more than 70 countries. For more information, visit http://www.takeda.com/news.
Additional information about Takeda is available through its corporate website, www.takeda.com, and additional information about Takeda Oncology, the brand for the global oncology business unit of Takeda Pharmaceutical Company Limited, is available through its website, www.takedaoncology.com.
About MPM Capital
MPM Capital (http://www.mpmcapital.com) is an early-stage life sciences venture firm founding and investing in companies that seek to cure major diseases by translating scientific innovations into positive clinical outcomes. MPM’s portfolio of companies aims to revolutionize the face of medicine across multiple areas including cancer, diabetes, obesity, pain, eHealth and more. With its experienced and dedicated team of operating executives and medical and scientific advisory board, MPM is powering novel medical breakthroughs that transform patient lives. MPM is currently investing from two funds ─ the BV2014 and UBS Oncology Impact Fund.