Gilead Buys Out Rights to Cancer Therapy From Jounce for $67 Million

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(Reuters) – Gilead Sciences will buy all the remaining rights for an experimental cancer therapy, GS-1811, from Jounce Therapeutics for $67 million, the drugmaker said on Tuesday.

The amended licensing deal will bolster Jounce’s cash resources in a challenging market for biotech companies.

Shares of Jounce more than doubled to $1.68, while Gilead’s shares fell marginally in after market trading.

Gilead will now be solely responsible for all further development and commercialization of GS-1811 globally. The amended deal is expected to reduce its 2022 earnings per share by 4 cents on both GAAP and non-GAAP basis.

GS-1811 is currently being evaluated in an early-stage trial for patients with solid tumors and works by selectively depleting T-cells that suppress the body’s immune response and allow tumors to grow.

In 2020, the drugmakers had agreed to collaborate on development of GS-1811, when Gilead made an upfront payment of $85 million to Jounce. Under the initial terms, Jounce was eligible to get up to $685 million in milestone payments from Gilead, of which it has received $40 million so far.

With the amendment, Jounce will no longer receive the remaining milestone payments or any of the sales-based royalties for the therapy.

(Reporting by Bhanvi Satija in Bengaluru; Editing by Shailesh Kuber)

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