Company is looking to divest, partner, or form a JV for its preclinical business in Milan.

Cell Therapeutics (CTI) has employed the services of Adjuvant Global Advisors to develop options for a partnership, asset divestment, or joint venture for the company’s preclinical drug development facility in Bresso, Milan. If a successful business strategy is implemented, CTI will reduce its burn rate by $14 million without cutting the workforce of the Bresso facility.

“As CTI transitions from a research-based operation to a commercial drug company, it has been transferring resources to its U.S. sales and marketing operations,” says James A. Bianco, M.D., CEO of CTI.  “As we have previously announced, we are refocusing our resources on late-stage and marketed products, and as such, CTI needs to reduce its preclinical operations.”

Christina Waters, Ph.D., president, of this preclinical arm, says, “CTI hopes to continue to work with the Bresso facility on contract project work and support of existing CTI pipeline projects as part of the terms of any acquisition or other business arrangement.”

Adjuvant will seek a potential buyer or partner for the Bresso facility, Cell Therapeutics Europe Sede Secondaria (CTE), with a focus on identifying organizations that want to expand with an intact and integrated preclinical team.

The personnel team has worked together in oncology for numerous years and can offer target discovery, lead discovery, optimization, as well as other preclinical activities that support development, CTI says. The organization comprises approximately 50 Ph.D. scientists.

CTE was formerly NovusPharma, a spinout of Roche/Boehringer Mannheim, which CTI acquired in 2004. CTI’s portfolio includes oncology drugs aimed at making cancer more treatable.

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