Astellas, Poseida Therapeutics Ink Allogeneic Cell Therapy Agreement


Collaboration will be oncology based—centered around allogeneic CAR-T cell therapy product candidates—and will provide Poseida with up to $550 million if certain milestones are met.

Image Credit: Adobe Stock Images/

Image Credit: Adobe Stock Images/

Xyphos Biosciences, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Astellas Pharma, and Poseida Therapeutics, Inc, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, have inked a research collaboration and license agreement that entails the development of novel convertibleCAR (convertible chimeric antigen receptor) programs.1 This will involve a combination of both parties’ cell therapy platforms.

Poseida’s goal is to develop cell and gene therapies (CGTs) that ultimately have the capability to cure certain rare diseases and cancers. Its oncology pipeline features allogeneic CAR-T cell therapy product candidates for both solid and liquid tumors—with the help of a a novel and proprietary ACCELTM technology platform that combines its aforementioned convertibleCAR with branded MicAbodies that target the tumor cells.

As a recent session at LogiPharma session2 explained, when it comes to the use of cell therapies for medical treatments, two types include autologous and allogeneic. Autologous features cells or tissues that are attained from the same person who is going to be undergoing the treatment (the patient is their own donor), whereas allogeneic include cells or tissues that are gathered from a different person. The former could present a lower rejection rate, but cell quality/availability could affect how suitable a person may be to take that route, while the latter calls for matching to ensure compatibility.

According to the agreement’s stipulations, the parties will utilize Poseida’s proprietary allogeneic CAR-T platform alongside Xyphos’ ACCELTM technology to design a Poseida-developed CAR-T construct; this will be the basis of two convertibleCAR product candidates that will target solid tumors.

Xyphos will be in charge of the development, along with any future commercialization of products that come from the partnership. Besides qualifying for low double digit tiered royalties as a percentage of net sales, Poseida will be paid $50 million upfront, combined with any development, sales milestones, and contingency payments, which could reach as high as $550 million total.

“We are excited to expand our relationship with Astellas, where we share a vision that cutting edge, off the shelf cell therapies can address significant unmet needs of patients with solid tumor malignancies,” commented Kristin Yarema, PhD, president and CEO of Poseida. “Today’s agreement further reinforces the economic value of Poseida’s highly differentiated non-viral technologies and enables development in areas beyond our core pipeline focus. It also highlights Poseida’s role as the partner of choice in allogeneic CAR-T.”

Astellas also expressed its excitement for the partnership, being that it provides plenty of potential for innovative expansion.

“At Astellas, we have a strong commitment to developing novel treatments for patients with cancer and have positioned immuno-oncology as a primary focus of our R&D strategy. By leveraging our extensive expertise, experience in cancer biology, and unique technologies, we are focused on reinvigorating the immune system’s ability to discover, disarm, and destroy cancers in more patients,” said Adam Pearson, chief strategy officer, Astellas. “By combining the ACCELTM platform with Poseida’s elegant and cutting-edge genetic editing platforms, we believe the collaboration will bring synergies between the two companies’ breakthrough research and will ultimately lead to expansion of Astellas’ portfolio and to delivery of innovative CAR-T cell therapies to cancer patients.”


1. Astellas and Poseida Therapeutics Enter Into Research Collaboration and License Agreement to Develop Novel Allogeneic Cell Therapies in Oncology. Astellas Pharma. May 2, 2024. Accessed May 3, 2024.

2. Saraceno N. LogiPharma Europe 2024: Obstacles Surrounding Personalized Therapy Supply Chains. Pharmaceutical Commerce. April 18, 2024. Accessed May 3, 2024.

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