GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) has exercised the option to obtain an exclusive global licence from Adaptimmune Therapeutics for an investigational SPEAR T-cell receptor therapy targeting NY-ESO-1 (GSK3377794).

Upon exercise of the option and transition of the programme, GSK will be responsible for all development, production and commercialisation activities for the T-cell therapy.

Over the course of the transition period, GSK will make a payment to Adaptimmune worth £48m, which includes development milestones of up to £18m and the option payment of £30m.

Following the completion of the transition, GSK will be able to nominate two additional targets.

GSK oncology research and development (R&D) senior vice-president Axel Hoos said: “The aim of GSK’s R&D is to develop medicines with transformational potential for patients.

"The aim of GSK’s R&D is to develop medicines with transformational potential for patients."

"We have seen compelling data for the NY-ESO investigational cell therapy in synovial sarcoma and, following this option exercise, we will capitalise on our in-house cell and gene therapy capabilities to support the development programme for GSK3377794.

“We will continue to explore the potential for this novel cell therapy in multiple tumour types, and in combination with other cancer therapies.” 

The development and subsequent commercialisation of GSK3377794 will result in additional payments for development milestones, tiered sales milestones and mid-single to low double-digit royalties on worldwide net sales.

Adaptimmune’s GSK3377794 has been granted PRIME designation by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) and breakthrough therapy designation by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

There are currently six phase I / II trials being conducted on GSK3377794 as monotherapy for non-small-cell lung cancer, metastatic melanoma, ovarian, multiple myeloma, synovial sarcoma and myxoid round cell liposarcoma, and one phase I study in combination with pembrolizumab in multiple myeloma.