AbbVie inks $2.9B deal with Chinese drugmaker to develop new cancer treatment

AbbVie on Sept. 4 signed a $2.9 billion deal with Chinese biotech company I-Mab to develop and sell its top cancer drug.

Lemzoparlimab, the monoclonal antibody developed by I-Mab, is designed to treat multiple cancers. It aims to minimize inherent binding to normal red blood cells while maintaining its anti-tumor effects, a quality which could differentiate it from similar antibodies in development.

AbbVie will pay I-Mab $180 million upfront, as well as a $20 million milestone payment based on Phase 1 results. The drugmaker will also pay an additional $1.74 billion in success-based milestone payments for lemzoparlimab.

"Cancer is the second-leading cause of death globally and the need for novel cancer therapies has never been more acute. The addition of I-Mab's novel CD47 programs complements our global clinical strategy in hematology and immuno-oncology," Thomas Hudson, MD, AbbVie's senior vice president of research and development and chief scientific officer, said in a news release. "We have been impressed with what I-Mab has been able to accomplish in research and clinical development and we look forward to working together to make a meaningful difference in the lives of millions of patients globally."

AbbVie on Sept. 4 signed a $2.9 billion deal with Chinese biotech company I-Mab to develop and sell its top cancer drug.

Lemzoparlimab, the monoclonal antibody developed by I-Mab, is designed to treat multiple cancers. It aims to minimize inherent binding to normal red blood cells while maintaining its anti-tumor effects, a quality which could differentiate it from similar antibodies in development.

AbbVie will pay I-Mab $180 million upfront, as well as a $20 million milestone payment based on Phase 1 results. The drugmaker will also pay an additional $1.74 billion in success-based milestone payments for lemzoparlimab.

"Cancer is the second-leading cause of death globally and the need for novel cancer therapies has never been more acute. The addition of I-Mab's novel CD47 programs complements our global clinical strategy in hematology and immuno-oncology," Thomas Hudson, MD, AbbVie's senior vice president of research and development and chief scientific officer, said in a news release. "We have been impressed with what I-Mab has been able to accomplish in research and clinical development and we look forward to working together to make a meaningful difference in the lives of millions of patients globally."

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