Incyte and Cellenkos Enter into Global Development Collaboration Agreement for CK0804

- Incyte and Cellenkos will evaluate the combination of ruxolitinib (Jakafi®) and CK0804, cord blood-derived T-regulatory cells, in patients with myelofibrosis

- Incyte has an exclusive option to acquire sole rights to CK0804

WILMINGTON, DE, USA I December 30, 2020 I Incyte (Nasdaq:INCY) and Cellenkos, Inc., a privately held, clinical stage biotech company, today announced a development collaboration to investigate the combination of ruxolitinib (Jakafi®) and CK0804, Cellenkos’ cryopreserved CXCR4 enriched, allogeneic, umbilical cord blood-derived T-regulatory cells, in patients with myelofibrosis (MF). In addition, Incyte has an exclusive option to acquire sole rights to develop and commercialize CK0804, and genetically-modified variants of CK0804, in benign and malignant hematology indications.

“We are excited to partner with Cellenkos to initiate this study as part of our LIMBER clinical development program, designed to evaluate new monotherapy and combination strategies for patients with MPNs.”

“This collaboration supports our continued commitment to developing new therapeutic options that may improve and expand treatment options for patients with MF, part of a group of rare blood cancers known as myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs),” said Steven Stein, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, Incyte. “We are excited to partner with Cellenkos to initiate this study as part of our LIMBER clinical development program, designed to evaluate new monotherapy and combination strategies for patients with MPNs.”

“We are delighted to partner with Incyte, a global biopharmaceutical company, to further study and develop CK0804. Incyte’s investment in strong science and R&D excellence makes them an ideal partner to evaluate CK0804 in combination with ruxolitinib as a potential treatment for the many patients living with myelofibrosis, especially those who are transfusion dependent,” said Tara Sadeghi, Vice President, Clinical Operations, Cellenkos, Inc. “Our innovative strategy of exploiting the CXCR4/CXCL12 axis to redirect the immune modulatory T-regulatory cells specifically to the diseased bone marrow holds the promise of resolving inflammation to allow for normal hematopoeisis resulting in clinical improvement. This collaboration is in line with our corporate strategy to partner with world-leading major pharma companies in order to maximize access to our innovative cellular medicines.”

Per the terms of the agreement, the companies plan to initiate a Phase 1b single arm, open-label study evaluating ruxolitinib in combination with CK0804 in patients with MF. Incyte will fund the study, which will be operationalized by Cellenkos.

In addition, per the agreement, Incyte will have an option to acquire an exclusive global license to develop and commercialize the program. Upon exercising the global licensing option, Incyte would be responsible for all activities and costs associated with research, development and commercialization of the program. Cellenkos would be eligible to receive a $20 million licensing fee and, for each distinct product under the agreement, development, regulatory and sales milestones totaling up to $294.5 million as well as tiered royalties ranging from mid-single digit to low-double digits, if approved.

The collaboration is effective immediately.

About Myelofibrosis (MF)

MF is a rare, chronic blood cancer that is part of a group of diseases known as MPNs. In MF, scar tissue forms in the bone marrow and impairs its ability to produce normal blood cells. This can result in an enlarged spleen, and symptoms such as fatigue, itching and night sweats, which can impact a patient’s quality of life. About 16,000 to 18,500 people in the United States are living with MF.


Incyte is a leader in the discovery and development of therapies for patients with myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs). The Leadership In MPNs BEyond Ruxolitinib (LIMBER) program is designed to evaluate multiple monotherapy and combination strategies to improve and expand treatments for patients with myeloproliferative neoplasms (MPNs). The program currently has three key areas of focus: development of a new, once-daily formulation of ruxolitinib; ruxolitinib-based combinations with new targets such as PI3Kδ, BET and ALK2; and new therapeutic options.

About Ruxolitinib (Jakafi®)

Ruxolitinib (Jakafi) is a first-in-class JAK1/JAK2 inhibitor approved by the U.S. FDA for the treatment of polycythemia vera (PV) in adults who have had an inadequate response to or are intolerant of hydroxyurea, in adults with intermediate or high-risk myelofibrosis (MF), including primary MF, post-polycythemia vera MF and post-essential thrombocythemia MF and for the treatment of steroid-refractory acute GVHD in adult and pediatric patients 12 years and older.

Jakafi is marketed by Incyte in the United States and by Novartis as Jakavi® (ruxolitinib) outside the United States. Jakafi is a registered trademark of Incyte Corporation. Jakavi is a registered trademark of Novartis AG in countries outside the United States.

About CK0804

CK0804 is a novel allogenic cell therapy product consisting of T-regulatory cells that exploit the CXCR4/CXCL12 axis and are derived from clinical-grade umbilical cord blood units and manufactured using Cellenkos' proprietary process. The product is cryopreserved and readily available off-the-shelf, without any requirement for HLA matching, and is infused intravenously. One manufacturing campaign can result in multiple doses of cryopreserved product that can be shipped to the clinical site, where it can be stored for an extended period or made available for immediate treatment, as needed.

Full Prescribing Information, which includes a more complete discussion of the risks associated with Jakafi, is available at

About Incyte

Incyte is a Wilmington, Delaware-based, global biopharmaceutical company focused on finding solutions for serious unmet medical needs through the discovery, development and commercialization of proprietary therapeutics. For additional information on Incyte, please visit and follow @Incyte.

About Cellenkos®, Inc.

Cellenkos is a clinical-stage biotechnology company located in Houston, Texas, USA, founded in 2016 with the licensing of a proprietary umbilical cord blood T-Regulatory cell therapy platform arising from the laboratory investigations of Simrit Parmar, MD, MSCI, Associate Professor in the Department of Lymphoma and Myeloma at the University of Texas at MD Anderson Cancer Center.

Being derived from umbilical cord blood, Cellenkos’ T-Regulatory cells are naïve, bonafide suppressor cells that resolve inflammation through multiple direct and indirect interactions. Cellenkos is dedicated to the development and commercialization of the allogeneic, off-the-shelf cell based products for the treatment of rare inflammatory diseases and autoimmune disorders. For more information, please visit

SOURCE: Incyte

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