As Abecma sales take off, Bristol Myers and 2seventy scrap a follow-up CAR-T
Bristol Myers Squibb and bluebird bio spinout 2seventy are axing a CAR-T program in the wake of rising Abecma sales.
The companies will cease all development for the program in question, bb21217, “based on the strength of the Abecma clinical data and high commercial interest,” 2seventy said in a press release Tuesday. It’s the second anti-BCMA CAR-T that Bristol Myers halted in the last year after ejecting a Juno-developed program last February.
2seventy said it plans to “leverage the learnings from this program to further strengthen its oncology pipeline.”
Tuesday’s move emphasizes Bristol Myers and 2seventy’s confidence in Abecma becoming a blockbuster. Approved last March as the first BCMA CAR-T program, the drug has seen massive demand that is outstripping current supply, BMS said in its third quarter update, and sales grew from $24 million in Q2 to $71 million in Q3.
The companies said Tuesday they expect between $250 million and $300 million in Abecma sales this year. Bristol Myers and 2seventy share the profits equally.
Currently, Abecma is approved in the fourth-line or later for multiple myeloma patients, but Bristol Myers has plans to quickly expand that. Phase III data for the third-line setting are expected sometime this year or next, and proof-of-concept data in second-line patients should come by the end of 2022.