Sanofi in Antibody Fragment Deal Worth Up to $2.8 billion

Sanofi has entered into a research collaboration and global exclusive licensing agreement with Ablynx, a biopharmaceutical company focused on developing and commercializing Nanobody-based therapeutics, a proprietary protein product of Albynx based on single-domain antibody fragments, in a deal worth up to $2.8 billion. The collaboration will initially focus on the treatment of various immune-mediated inflammatory diseases.

Under the deal, Sanofi will make an upfront payment of EUR 23 million ($26 million) to Ablynx, comprised of license and option fees. This collaboration gives Sanofi access to certain Nanobodies in Ablynx’s existing portfolio as well as to Ablynx’s scientists and proprietary Nanobody platform. Sanofi gains exclusive global rights to certain multi-specific Nanobodies against selected targets, with options for similar rights to additional targets, for a total of eight potential Nanobody product candidates.

In addition, Ablynx will receive research funding, estimated to amount to EUR 8 million ($9 million) for the initially selected targets. Upon exercise of options to additional targets, Sanofi will pay Ablynx further option exercise fees and research funding. Sanofi will be responsible for the development, manufacturing, and commercialization of any products resulting from this agreement. Ablynx will be eligible to receive development, regulatory, and commercial milestone payments of up to EUR 2.4 billion ($2.8 billion) plus tiered royalties up to low double digits on the net sales of any products originating from the collaboration.

Antibody fragments combine the advantages of conventional antibody drugs with some of the features of small-molecule drugs, according to information from Ablynx.

Source: Ablynx

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