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Ligand (LGND) Inks Deal with TeneoBio for OmniAb Technology


Ligand Pharmaceuticals Incorporated LGND announced that it has entered into a worldwide license agreement with California-based TeneoBio, Inc. Under the deal, TeneoBio will utilize OmniFlic technology from Ligand’s OmniAb platform for the discovery of fully human bispecific antibodies for developing treatments targeting various diseases, with initial focus on cancer, autoimmunity and infectious diseases.

This deal will see Ligand receiving annual platform access payments, milestone payments, sublicensing fees and royalties for products developed by incorporating an OmniFlic antibody. Meanwhile, TeneoBio will be responsible for all costs related to the programs.

We remind investors that OmniAb, an antibody-generating platform, became part of Ligand’s technology portfolio following the Jan 2016 acquisition of OMT, Inc., a privately held company focused on genetic engineering of animals for the generation of human therapeutic antibodies. The acquisition not only diversified Ligand's business by adding OmniAb to its technology portfolio, which had already consisted of the Captisol formulation technology, but also created a strong platform to aid the company’s search for new licenses and partnerships.

Note that OmniAb includes three transgenic animal platforms – OmniRat, OmniMouse and OmniFlic – for producing mono- and bispecific human therapeutic antibodies.

Ligand has struck quite a few partnerships with other health care companies for its OmniAb platform. This January, the company signed a worldwide licensing agreement with Emergent BioSolutions, Inc. EBS.

Such deals are important for Ligand as they provide the company with funds in the form of milestones, royalty and other payments, thereby boosting its top line.



Zacks Rank & Key Picks

Ligand currently sports a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy). Other equally ranked stocks in health care sector include ANI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. ANIP and Anika Therapeutics Inc. ANIK. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

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