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Gilead and Merus Forge $1.5 Billion Oncology Alliance to Novel Cancer Treatments


8 March 2024

Gilead Sciences and Merus have entered a $1.5 billion collaboration to develop novel trispecific antibody therapies for cancer. Utilizing Merus' Triclonics® technology and Gilead's oncology expertise, the partnership aims to advance cancer treatment with potentially more effective and safer options. Merus will receive upfront and equity payments, with future milestones possibly bringing the total to $1.5 billion.

This partnership aims to develop therapies that can target dual tumor-associated antigens, marking a significant step forward in the treatment of cancer. Triclonics® technology allows for the design of antibodies that can simultaneously engage with three different targets, potentially enhancing the efficacy and safety of cancer treatments.

"We have seen the successful application of bispecific antibodies as an immune-modulating modality used to treat cancer. We are now looking ahead to the development of additional multispecific antibodies capable of driving robust anti-tumor immune responses with an improved efficacy and safety profile. We are excited to explore the potential of Merus’ differentiated Triclonics® platform to discover and advance transformative new cancer therapies," said Dr. Flavius Martin, Executive Vice President, Gilead Sciences.

Financial Details of the Collaboration

Under the agreement, Merus will receive an upfront cash payment of $56 million and a $25 million equity investment from Gilead. The collaboration could yield up to $1.5 billion for Merus, including potential development, commercialization milestones, and royalties on sales. Merus retains the option to co-fund the development of a third program, which could alter its financial participation in favor of shared net profits and losses.

Hui Liu, Ph.D., Merus' Executive Vice President, CBO & Head of Merus US, sees this alliance as a chance for Merus to apply its research expertise towards groundbreaking biology and meeting critical healthcare needs. He emphasized, "We are looking forward to working with Gilead to develop novel T-cell engager antibodies using our Triclonics® technology. We are grateful for our collaborations which represent opportunities for Merus to leverage our research capabilities to pursue innovative biology and to address significant unmet medical needs."

About Merus and Gilead Sciences

Merus, a clinical-stage oncology company, specializes in the development of full-length human bispecific and trispecific antibody therapeutics. Its Multiclonics® technology produces antibodies with features similar to conventional human monoclonal antibodies, including a long half-life and low immunogenicity. Gilead Sciences has been at the forefront of medical innovation for over three decades, with a focus on life-threatening diseases such as HIV, viral hepatitis, COVID-19, and cancer. This collaboration marks a significant step in both companies' efforts to develop more effective and safer treatments for cancer, offering hope to patients around the globe.


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