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Another immuno-oncology success for F-star in collaboration with Merck KGaA

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F-star Therapeutics has been buoyed by Ares Trading SA - an affiliate of Merck KGaA - exercising a fourth licensing option under an ongoing immuno-oncology collaboration.

Merck KGaA, based in Darmstadt, Germany, will be responsible for development and commercialisation costs and pay success-based milestones and royalties on net sales resulting from the agreement.

Eliot Forster, CEO of F-star
Eliot Forster, CEO of F-star

The companies have been collaborating for years, with Merck exercising its option to bring a first program from the collaboration into its pipeline back in 2019.

The German company took an early option on a second program in July 2020 and then exercised a third option in March 2021.

With the fourth now confirmed, there is still a potential $765million potential milestone-based revenue due to F-star, which is based at Babraham Research Campus and Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA.

The company is focused on next generation bispecific immunotherapies to transform the lives of patients with cancer.

Eliot Forster, CEO of F-star Therapeutics, Inc, said: “We were delighted to see the recent data presented by Merck KGaA, from our long-standing collaboration at the recent SITC conference, demonstrating the unique potential of the F-star bispecific platform.

“This latest licensing option marks another positive milestone in our collaboration and it is exciting to see our partner successfully progress another mAb2-based program.

“Along with our internal pipeline, we believe all of these next generation immuno-oncology programs will make a real difference to the lives of patients with cancer.”

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