EuroBiotech Report—Autolus delay, Novartis sale, Sonnet deal, Y-mAbs and the U.K.

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Welcome to the latest edition of our weekly EuroBiotech Report. We start this week at Autolus, which revealed a manufacturing delay is holding up multiple CAR-T clinical development programs. Elsewhere, Novartis licensed late-phase rare genetic disease treatment leniolisib to Pharming. Sonnet BioTherapeutics picked up an experimental treatment for chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy that was once in Merck KGaA's pipeline. Y-mAbs Therapeutics revealed the extent of its hiring since last year's IPO. The U.K. made a pitch to attract the best of the world's scientists. And more. — Nick Taylor
 
1. Autolus delays multiple CAR-T clinical programs
 
A manufacturing delay is stymying progress of a clutch of Autolus’ CAR-T programs. Autolus revealed the setbacks alongside news that it is dumping the first-generation version of AUTO2 in the face of tough competition in the BCMA space.

2. Novartis sells phase 3 rare disease drug to Pharming

Pharming has licensed late-phase rare genetic disease treatment leniolisib from Novartis for $20 million (€17.9 million) upfront. The immunomodulator could come to market in activated PI3K-delta syndrome (APDS) in the second half of 2021. 
 
3. Sonnet bags ex-Serono neuropathy drug via Relief Therapeutics deal
 
Sonnet BioTherapeutics has struck a deal to acquire an ex-Serono drug from Relief Therapeutics. The agreement tees Sonnet up to advance the asset in chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) using an equity facility worth up to $100 million (€89 million).

4. Y-mAbs ramps up headcount in post-IPO hiring spree

Y-mAbs Therapeutics has rapidly expanded its headcount by 65%. The post-IPO hiring spree comes as Y-mAbs heads toward FDA filings of two cancer drugs later this year.
 
5. U.K. plans post-Brexit easing of rules on migrant scientists
 
The U.K. is set to open its doors to top scientists in a bid to retain and strengthen its leading position in the field after Brexit. Through a series of reforms, U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson aims to create a fast-track immigration route that facilitates the flow of talent from around the world. 

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