Deals, Pre-clinical

CSL snags a preclinical stem cell therapy in $416M Calimmune buyout, plans to spin out HIV effort

Louis Breton, Calimmune

CSL Behring has bagged the stem cell gene therapy player Calimmune for $91 million and another $325 million in milestones for the years-long clinical journey ahead.

CSL is acquiring two therapeutic tech platforms in the deal, which involve developing and delivering stem cell therapies. CSL’s main pipeline interest is in Calimmune’s preclinical sickle cell disease and β-thalassemia, which the buyer sees as a big plus for its work in hematology.

CSL, though, plans to let go of control of Calimmune’s lead, clinical program on HIV as soon as possible. In a follow-up to a query, a company spokesperson replied:

We are currently evaluating our options for developing this pipeline candidate, which could include licensing or partnering.  Given our areas of focus, it is unlikely that we will develop this candidate on our own.

Paul Perreault

CSL’s plans to development the preclinical program acknowledges that this will be a lengthy process. In their statement CSL notes that it expects to take eight years to push through the clinical program.

Calimmune has research work underway in Australia and California, where the company has gained support for the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine.

“Calimmune shares in our promise and focus to improve the lives of patients with rare and serious medical conditions,” said CSL CEO Paul Perreault. “The acquisition represents another important step in the execution of our strategy for sustainable growth.”

Calimmune CEO Louis Breton added: “We are excited to become part of CSL Behring. They are an established global industry leader in protein-replacement therapies and have a proven track record of driving innovations through the development pipeline and delivering differentiated products to the global marketplace. Together, we are well positioned to take our achievements to the next level.”


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