Allogene Therapeutics said in an SEC filing today that French partner Servier has cut off its involvement in a partnership developing therapies directed against CD19, including the most advanced candidates in Allogene’s pipeline.
Shares of Allogene $ALLO, an outfit run by Kite vets Arie Belldegrun and research chief David Chang, fell by almost 10% on Wednesday, even as the San Francisco-based company said that Servier’s discontinuation “does not otherwise affect our current exclusive license for the development and commercialization of CD19 Products in the United States.”
Cutting of Servier will also allow Allogene to license these CD19 products — ALLO-501, ALLO-501 and UCART19 — outside of the US, with milestones of up to €46 million ($45 million).
Exercising that ex-US option, however, which Servier wants done quickly, would cut off Allogene’s ability to recover from Servier 40% of the development costs for CD19 products.
Part of the reason for this separation may be Servier’s ongoing CD19-related collaboration with Cellectis. Under a 2014 deal, Cellectis received $10 million upfront and was eligible for up to $140 million to develop six product candidates.
And while Servier has also cut off its work with Allogene, Cellectis “has challenged certain performance by Servier and has also challenged the ability of Servier to grant a world-wide sublicense,” Allogene said in the SEC filing.