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South San Francisco-based Allogene Therapeutics has launched with $300 million in series A funding and a partnership with Pfizer to develop allogeneic, or off-the-shelf, CAR T-cell immunotherapies for cancer. Allogene was founded by Arie Belldegrun and David Chang, former executives of Kite Pharma, which Gilead Sciences acquired for $11.9 billion last year. Pfizer will take a 25% stake in Allogene and Allogene will get rights to 16 preclinical CAR T programs that Pfizer licensed from Cellectis and Servier. Chang tells C&EN that Allogene will recruit about 50 scientists from Pfizer this year to work on allogeneic cell therapies for cancers including solid tumors.
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