Kite buys Tmunity, grabbing CAR-T platform

Dec. 20, 2022

Gilead's Kite will acquire Philly-based biotech Tmunity, adding additional pipeline assets, platform capabilities, and a research and licensing agreement with UPenn.

Specifically, the deal will provide Kite with pre-clinical and clinical programs, including Tmunity's ‘armored’ CAR-T technology platform, which potentially could be applied to a variety of CAR-Ts to enhance anti-tumor activity, as well as rapid manufacturing processes.

Left out of the the deal are Tmunity’s prostate-specific membrane antigen (PSMA) assets. Back in June of last year,  Tmunity Therapeutics stopped its phase 1 clinical trial in men with prostate cancer because two patients died from immune effector cell-associated neurotoxicity syndrome. Those assets, as well as Tmunity's prostate stem cell antigen (PSCA) assets are not part of the deal and will be spun-out by Tmunity.

Also part of the acquisition, Kite will assume responsibility for continuing the R&D collaboration between Tmunity and UPenn, which includes research funding to UPenn along with options and licenses to certain cell engineering and manufacturing technologies invented and developed in certain UPenn laboratories

The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2023, and after closing, Tmunity’s employees will join Kite. The financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.