TCR2 Therapeutics Inc. (Nasdaq: TCRR), a clinical-stage cell therapy company with a pipeline of novel T cell therapies for cancer patients suffering from solid tumors, and Arbor Biotechnologies®, a biotechnology company discovering and developing the next generation of genetic medicines, today announced that the two companies have entered into a strategic research collaboration and non-exclusive license agreement focused on the further development of a defined set of allogeneic TRuC-T cell therapies. The collaboration leverages Arbor’s proprietary CRISPR gene-editing technology, which is tailored to address the underlying pathology of genetic diseases, and TCR2‘s’ first-in-class TRuC platform, which has demonstrated clinical activity in multiple treatment-refractory mesothelin-expressing solid tumor indications with its lead autologous program gavo-cel.
“Our autologous TRuC-T cells have already established clinical activity in multiple difficult-to-treat solid tumors without being dependent on HLA, thus allowing our therapies to be used on the broadest patient population. We believe allogeneic TRuC-T cell therapies will further extend this impact by accelerating patient access while reducing manufacturing cost,” said Garry Menzel, Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer of TCR2 Therapeutics. “The collaboration with Arbor enables us to evaluate multiple allogeneic candidates with novel enhancements and advance a lead candidate in 2022, consistent with our vision of continuing to innovate novel therapies for cancer patients suffering with solid tumors.”
“The collaboration with TCR2 allows us to leverage Arbor’s proprietary discovery engine and gene editing technologies with an established cell therapy leader developing life-changing treatments for serious cancers,” said Devyn Smith, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer of Arbor. “This agreement reinforces the versatility and strength of Arbor’s platform and furthers our strategic vision of expanding the impact of Arbor’s gene editors through partnerships with leading organizations developing engineered cell therapies.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Arbor will receive an upfront cash payment and is also eligible to receive additional milestone payments based upon the successful achievement of development, regulatory and commercial milestones across a selected number of programs. In addition, TCR2 will pay tiered royalties on future net sales on any products that may result from this collaboration.