BioNTech and Crescendo partner to develop precision immunotherapies

The collaboration sees BioNtech combine its multimodal immunotherapy expertise with Crescendo’s Humabody VH platform to produce precision immunotherapies.

Crescendo Biologics, a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company developing targeted T cell enhancing therapeutics will contribute its transgenic platform to deliver fully human heavy-chain antibody domains (Humabody VH) against targets selected by BioNTech.

This includes messenger RNA (mRNA) based antibodies, as well as engineered cell therapies that have the potential to treat patients with cancer and other diseases.

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Humabodies are the smallest part of an antibody, which are capable of specific antigen binding. They provide additional advantages such as being small, stability and molecular simplicity due to the lack of a light chain, and enhanced tissue and tumor penetration.

According to both firms, the modular nature of Humabodies make them ideal for the development of multi-target immunotherapies.

“Crescendo’s platform provides excellent properties for exploiting novel targets and target combinations which we believe has great potential for the development of multi-specific mRNA and engineered cell-based therapies in a variety of disease areas,” said Ugur Sahin, CEO of BioNTech.

“We are excited to begin working with Crescendo to further strengthen and expand our multimodal immunotherapy portfolio and deliver breakthrough precision medicines for patients.”

The initial collaboration is a three-year deal in which Crescendo Biologics will receive a $40 million upfront payment from BioNTech, as well as research funding and the eligibility to collect more than $750 million in development, regulatory, and commercial milestone payments.

BioNTech will have exclusive global development and commercialization rights to all immunotherapies developed from the partnership.

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