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FDA partially halts leukemia studies of Gilead cancer drug

August 21, 2023

After the success of cancer immunotherapies like Keytruda and Opdivo, drugmakers went on a hunt to find new ways to defeat cancer by turning the immune system onto tumor cells. One such pathway was CD47, a cell protein that sends away immune cells called macrophages, the so-called “don’t-eat-me” signal.

Big pharma paid handsomely for rights to CD47 drugs, including Gilead’s takeout of Forty Seven, Pfizer’s $2.3 billion acquisition of Trillium; AbbVie’s licensing deal for I-Mab’s CD47; and Boehringer Ingelheim’s deal to license a CD47 from OSE Immunotherapeutics.

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