SQZ, Erytech kick off $57M cell therapy partnership; Jean-Paul Kress lands new CEO gig at MorphoSys
→ In a marriage of two technologies meant to make cell therapies more powerful, SQZ Biotech is teaming up with France’s Erytech Pharma for a collaboration, with $57 million reserved for the first project and $50 million for each subsequent approval (product or indication). Having access to Erytech’s method of fashioning therapeutics from red blood cells, the Cambridge, MA-based company said, will amplify SQZ’s cell engineering capabilities and allow them to devleop a new class of immunomodulatory therapies. Its own tech — so far applied in cancer but also has potential in diabetes — temporary disrupts the cell membrane by squeezing the cell, thus creating a brief window for target materials such as antigens to enter.
→ MorphoSys has recruited ex-Syntimmune chief Jean-Paul Kress to take the helm as Simon Moroney makes his planned exit from the C-suite. Moroney steps down at the beginning of September. Kress helped arrange the sale of Syntimmune to Alexion.