Takeda inks immuno-oncology partnership with Kumquat

April 18, 2024

Takeda has entered into a partnership with California-based Kumquat Biosciences to develop and market a novel immuno-oncology small molecule inhibitor as a mono- and/or combination-therapy.

Under the terms of the partnership, Takeda will lead the later stages of development and commercialization and Kumquat will be responsible for initial research and phase 1 clinical trials. Takeda has obtained exclusive global rights to the drug, with Kumquat receiving up to $130 million in near-term payments and potentially more than $1.2 billion in milestone payments and royalties on future sales.

Kumquat CEO Yi Liu expressed excitement about the collaboration's potential to speed up the drug's clinical development and extend its reach to help more cancer patients.

Back in 2021, Kumquat inked a potential $2 billion multi-year collaboration with Eli Lilly focused on the discovery, development and commercialization of potential novel small molecules that stimulate tumor-specific immune responses. Founded in 2019, Kumquat has secured over $100 million in funding from investors including OrbiMed, Sequoia Capital China, EcoR1, Lilly Asia Ventures and Roche Venture Fund.