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Japan's FUJIFILM takes equity stake in Cynata Therapeutics

Australia's Cynata Therapeutics Ltd. said it executed a license option agreement with Japan's FUJIFILM Corp. to develop and commercialize certain Cynata technology.

As part of the deal, FUJIFILM acquired a A$3.97 million strategic equity stake in Cynata through the purchase of 8,088,403 ordinary Cynata shares. After the transaction closes, FUJIFILM will hold a 10.01% stake in Cynata.

The agreement grants FUJIFILM the option to an exclusive, worldwide licence to market CYP-001, Cynata's lead induced pluripotent stem cell-derived therapeutic mesenchymal stem cell product for graft-versus-host disease. The option is exercisable up to 90 days after a primary evaluation period of Cynata's phase 1 clinical trial in GvHD is completed.

An up-front fee of US$3 million is payable, which, including other potential future milestones, totals over A$60 million in potential one-time payments, along with double-digit royalties on net sales of CYP-001 product. If FUJIFILM exercises the option, it will shoulder future CYP-001 development costs.

The agreement also covers an option to negotiate a license for manufacturing CYP-001 product and certain rights to Cynata's proprietary Cymerus technology for treatment of other diseases.

As of Jan.18, US$1 was equivalent to A$1.32.