Lilly, Kumquat Biosciences in $2-Bn-Plus Small-Molecule Cancer Drug Pact

Eli Lilly and Company, through Loxo Oncology, a Lilly R&D group, and Kumquat Biosciences, a drug-discovery and development company, have entered into an exclusive collaboration to discover, develop, and commercialize small-molecule drugs for stimulating tumor-specific immune responses in a $2.1-billion deal ($70 million upfront and over $2 billion in milestones).

Through the multi-year collaboration, Kumquat will use its small-molecule immuno-oncology platform to discover clinical candidates, and Lilly has the option to select a certain number of drug candidates for further development and commercialization globally, excluding Greater China. Kumquat retains development and commercialization rights in Greater China for each of the drug candidates selected by Lilly, subject to Lilly’s option to co-commercialize in Greater China. Additionally, Kumquat has the option to co-develop and co-commercialize a certain number of the drug candidates selected by Lilly in the US.

Under the deal, Kumquat will receive an aggregate of $70 million consisting of a cash upfront payment and an equity investment. Kumquat is eligible to receive over $2 billion in potential milestone payments based on the achievement of preclinical, development, and future commercial milestones as well as royalties on sales of commercialized products resulting from the collaboration.

Lilly acquired Loxo Oncology, which is focused on the development and commercialization of medicines of genomically defined cancers, in 2019 for $8 billion. Loxo Oncology at Lilly was created in December 2019, combining the Lilly Research Laboratories oncology organization and Loxo Oncology.

Source: Eli Lilly and Company and Kumquat Biosciences

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