Pfizer has continued its efforts to expand its portfolio following its failed, 69.4 billion pounds ($117.6 billion), acquisition run on the British AstraZeneca.
On Wednesday, the company announced a deal to acquire a 10% stake in listed French biotech Cellectis and use its new partner's immunotherapy technology to develop cancer treatments.
The U.S. company said it will pay Cellectis$80 million upfront for special rights for the development and commercialization of Cellectis' chimeric antigen receptor T-cell immunotherapies to treat 15 oncology targets selected by Pfizer.
Pfizer will also have first right of denial on another four targets which Cellectis will select -- the U.S. group will offer R&D financing for all 16 targets.
Milestone payments to Cellectis will add nearly $185 million to the value of the transaction, while the French company will also be qualified for unspecified royalties on sales of any products that are commercialized.
Cellectis chairman and CEO Andre Choulika said : "We believe our CAR-T platform technology has the potential to offer a real advantage over other approaches to T-cell receptor engineering and this collaboration with Pfizer is an important step towards realizing the full potential of this technology in harnessing the body's own immune system to fight cancer."
Calling the deal a "win-win for both companies," Pfizer spokesman Dean Mastrojohn, said : "For Cellectis, they now have a partner with broad global capabilities and deep oncology and immunology expertise. For Pfizer, we now have the opportunity to work together with a company on the cutting-edge of science in immunotherapy, whose innovative focus and scientific expertise has the potential to accelerate our efforts to continue to grow our immuno-oncology portfolio."