Agenus trimming 50 jobs as it focuses on cancer vaccines and antibodies

By Staff Reporter

- Last updated on GMT

Image: iStock/BrianAJackson
Image: iStock/BrianAJackson

Related tags Vaccine

Immuno-oncology antibody and vaccine firm Agenus Inc will close a site in Basel and axe 50 jobs as part of a reorganisation.

The Lexington, Massachusetts-headquartered biotech announced a business realignment plan yesterday, explaining the aim is to reduce R&D costs and consolidate operations.

A facility in Basel, Switzerland – added when the firm acquired 4-Antibody AG in 2014​ – is set to close, and 50 jobs across Agenus will be lost, though specific functions have not yet been divulged.

Meanwhile Agenus intends to strengthen its focus on the clinical development of its two preclinical antibodies targeting 4-1BB and TIGIT, and its clinical-stage neoantigen cancer vaccine programme AutoSynVax.

“These changes to our organisational structure make us a leaner and more focused organisation, which is critically important for our next phase of advancement towards commercial readiness,”​ CEO Garo Armen said in a statement.

“We will also maintain a focused R&D effort to rapidly generate and develop best of breed novel immuno-oncology candidates. It is important to indicate that as an agile and efficient company we aim to rapidly deliver effective treatments at affordable prices.”

The firm says the restructuring measures will also ensure commercial readiness for GMP manufacturing at its production facility in Berkeley, California.

And speaking earlier this month, VP of R&D Jennifer Buell said Agenus has recently put into place manufacturing and cell line development capabilities through acquisitions and in licensing.

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