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Twist Bioscience, Neogene Therapeutics Partner to Develop Personalized CAR T Cells, TCR Therapies

NEW YORK – Twist Bioscience and Neogene Therapeutics said on Tuesday that they have formed a broad strategic partnership to develop personalized chimeric antigen receptor (CAR) T cell therapies and T cell receptor (TCR) therapies for patients with cancer.

The companies will combine Neogene's expertise in targeting tumor neoantigens with Twist's DNA synthesis platform and product lines to develop novel tools for T cell therapies. Under the terms of the agreement, Twist business unit Twist Biopharma will create a specialized TCR library for Neogene with the goal of discovering engineered TCRs against two specified T cell targets for future Neogene personalized T cell therapies.

Twist Biopharma is also planning to use its so-called Library of Libraries to research antibodies with specific function, affinity, and specificity to two oncology targets for future Neogene CAR-T therapies. These antibodies will have very fine, or single-point, specificity to their target, providing the potential for novel CAR-T therapies against such targets, the companies said.

Twist will receive technology access fees as well as milestone payments and royalties based on key preclinical, clinical, and commercial milestones for any antibodies and TCRs resulting from the collaboration. Neogene will get exclusive rights to the synthetic TCR library for viral and neoantigen targeting in the oncology field.

"Engineered T cell therapies have demonstrated benefit to patients with difficult-to-treat cancers. We are delighted to partner with Neogene, a company pioneering fully personalized T cell therapies for solid tumors," Twist Cofounder and CEO Emily Leproust said in a statement. "Putting our platforms together, we believe we will be able to expedite the identification and genetic engineering of TCR genes to create personalized T cell therapies for cancer."