LONDON – Morphosys AG finally has some heft to put behind its U.S. commercialization ambitions following FDA approval for its long-nurtured anti-CD19 antibody, Monjuvi (tafasitamab-cxix) in relapsed or refractory diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (r/rDLBCL).
At the beginning of this week, the digitally-delivered Bio-Europe Spring 2020 conference launched with 6,000 partnering meetings, 45 company presentations, more than 50 virtual exhibits and 12 panel discussions scheduled.
Investors have grown accustomed to hearing news of major announcements from big pharma and blue chip biotech companies during the J.P. Morgan Healthcare conference week. However, as it turned out, headline catalysts were in short supply. In the absence of any major M&A deals taking place, the event turned out to be unusually muted.
Ten days after its JAK1 inhibitor, itacitinib, failed a phase III trial in acute graft-vs.-host-disease (GVHD), Incyte Corp. has finalized a deal that could provide an alternative growth path. It is paying Morphosys AG $750 million up front, investing $150 million in its stock and is on the hook for up to $1.1 billion in milestones for a 50% interest in U.S. rights to the CD19-targeting antibody tafasitamab (MOR-208) and for 100% of the rights in all other territories.