NantWorks Launches New Company, NantCell

Los Angeles-based NantWorks, the umbrella technology development organization run by billionaire Dr. Patrick Soon-Shiong, said today that it has launched a new immuno-oncology company called NantCell. NantWorks said that, as part of the launch, it has entered into a licensing agreement with Thousand Oaks-based Amgen for its AMG 479 (ganitumab) compound. Financial details of the deal with Amgen were not disclosed. AMG 479 had been in Phase 3 development, aimed at treating pancreatic cancer. NantWorks' Soon-Shiong said the company believes that the development of antibody molecules requires next generation sequencing such as the technology the company has been developing, in order to establish the appropriate combination with other drugs to minimize side effects and maximize clinical outcomes.