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Tessa Therapeutics and Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy Enter into Strategic Alliance Agreement

  • Unique collaboration model will leverage the Parker Institute’s immunotherapy network and Tessa’s Virus Specific T Cell (VST) platform to create next generation cancer immunotherapy treatments
  • Tessa Therapeutics is the first cellular therapy partner company to form a multi-year alliance with the Parker Institute

SINGAPORE & SAN FRANCISCO – 19 June 2017 – Tessa Therapeutics (Tessa) and the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy (Parker Institute) today announced the establishment of a multi-year strategic alliance to combine their capabilities to jointly advance research in the field of cancer immunotherapy. The two partners will collaborate on unique clinical and pre-clinical projects in order to develop novel cellular therapy and immuno-oncology combination treatments.

The Parker Institute’s model brings together top cancer research institutions to share resources, data, and technology, accelerate research through unifying and managing clinical trial design, and conduct multi-center clinical trials. Tessa brings its T cell therapy expertise to the partnership. Tessa’s Virus Specific T Cell technology holds the promise of becoming a treatment platform for a wide variety of cancer indications and the company’s international production and logistics network enables the rapid roll-out of large-scale, multi-center cellular therapy trials. Tessa is currently conducting the world’s first FDA Phase III cancer T cell therapy trial.
This is the Parker Institute’s first major agreement with a cellular therapy partner. The Parker Institute will continue to build key industry relationships critical for the success of its unique model.

Fred Ramsdell, Ph.D., Vice President of Research at the Parker Institute, said, “Tessa has built both an impressive team as well as a very advanced suite of capabilities in the immuno-oncology realm. They have recognized many of the challenges to cellular therapies and are addressing them in thoughtful and science driven ways – and laying the foundation for the next generation of therapies. Few organizations have the commitment and vision of Tessa, and we are excited to help bring these attributes to our Parker Institute network and to further the goal of effective therapeutic development.”

Andrew Khoo, co-founder and CEO of Tessa Therapeutics, said, “The Parker Institute is driving innovation in the field of cancer immunotherapy by bringing together the best immunologists, cancer research institutes, and industry partners globally. We feel a strong sense of alignment in terms of our vision and ultimate goals. At Tessa, we are excited to join this network and together leverage our strong translational capabilities to build further on Tessa’s core VST platform. As a partner of the Parker Institute and a member of the Institute-led consortium, we are committed to a range of exciting collaborative projects, working towards our shared vision of a world without untreatable cancers.”

John E. Connolly, Ph.D., Chief Scientific Officer of Tessa Therapeutics, added, “The Parker Institute enables a first-of-its-kind model for collaboration among world-leading academic and industry partners to accelerate research into innovative cancer immunotherapies. We are delighted to be their first cell therapy partner and look forward to leveraging on the Institute’s hub and spoke model for collaborative studies to design next-generation immunotherapeutic technologies and to translate research into treatments that will transform patients’ lives for the better.”

About Tessa Therapeutics

Tessa Therapeutics is a fully-integrated, international biotech company with the scientific vision of revolutionizing the treatment of cancer by redirecting the body’s potent anti-viral immune response to recognize and kill cancer cells. Tessa’s core virus-specific T cell (VST) platform has shown compelling results in the treatment of solid tumors, and the company is building a portfolio of therapies addressing a wide range of tumors by combining the qualities of its T cell platform with complementary technologies. Tessa’s lead Phase III trial for Nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is the world’s largest Phase III T Cell immunotherapy trial for any cancer indication. The company has built up robust operational and supply chain capabilities to successfully deliver autologous T cell therapy treatments to a large patient pool across five countries. Tessa has exclusive licenses to multiple technologies developed at Baylor College of Medicine. The National Cancer Centre Singapore, one of Asia’s leading clinical research centers, is a strategic shareholder of Tessa and has granted exclusive rights to immuno-oncology technologies to Tessa. The combination of such technologies from its academic, clinical, and commercial research partners have enabled the company to create a fully-integrated approach to the treatment of cancer with immunotherapy.
For more information on Tessa, please visit

About Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy

The Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy brings together the best scientists, clinicians and industry partners to build a smarter and more coordinated cancer immunotherapy research effort. The Parker Institute is an unprecedented collaboration between the country’s leading immunologists and cancer centers, including Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Stanford Medicine, the University of California, Los Angeles, the University of California, San Francisco, the University of Pennsylvania and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. The Parker Institute network also includes more than 40 industry and nonprofit partners, more than 60 labs and more than 300 of the nation’s top researchers focused on treating the deadliest cancers.

The goal is to accelerate the development of breakthrough immune therapies capable of turning most cancers into curable diseases. The Institute was created through a $250 million grant from The Parker Foundation.
For more information, visit

Forward-Looking Statements

This press release may contain forward-looking statements. Such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from such forward-looking statements, and past performance should not be considered as an indication of future performance.

Brunswick Group
Will Carnwath, CJ Lin
+65 6426 8188

Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy