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Two-year-old Xyphos gains exit as Astellas scoops up CAR T switch platform

Xyphos’ animal data and focus on its CAR T switch platform paid off with Astellas takeout

After splitting from parent company AvidBiotics in 2017, Xyphos has taken a short path to reward the decision with a takeout by Astellas. The Japanese pharma will use the technology to build its immuno-oncology pipeline, capping a year of expansion of its cell and gene therapy capabilities.

On Dec. 26, Astellas Pharma Inc. (Tokyo:4503) announced it has paid $120 million up front for Xyphos Biosciences Inc., and the biotech’s shareholders are eligible for $545 million in milestones.

With Xyphos’ lead program at least a year away from the clinic, it’s clear the deal is more about the platform than the asset.

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