AstraZeneca acquires Gracell Biotechnologies

Dec. 29, 2023

AstraZeneca announced this week that it would acquire Gracell Biotechnologies, a biopharma focusing in oncology and autoimmune cell therapies. 

Gracell will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary of AstraZeneca, maintaining operations in China and the US. The financial terms include a cash payment of $2.00 per ordinary share at closing, totaling approximately $1 billion, with additional contingent value payments based on regulatory milestones, potentially reaching a total transaction value of about $1.2 billion

The acquisition enhances AstraZeneca's cell therapy portfolio with GC012F, a novel autologous chimeric antigen receptor T-cell CAR-T therapy targeting BCMA and CD19, with applications in multiple myeloma, hematologic malignancies, and autoimmune diseases.

GC012F utilizes Gracell's FasTCAR platform, which the company says has the potential to significantly reducing manufacturing time and enhance treatment effectiveness. The acquisition aligns with AstraZeneca's cell therapy strategy, expanding its presence in hematology.

The transaction is expected to wrap up in the first quarter 2024, pending customary closing conditions, regulatory approvals, and Gracell shareholder consent.