Abbott, Celera in Cancer Deal

Abbott Laboratories ( ABT) and Celera Genomics ( CRA) are teaming up to fight cancer.

The two companies Wednesday announced a strategic collaboration to discover, develop and commercialize oncology treatments. The duo will work together to find therapeutic antibodies and small molecules, using Celera's work in genomics to identify proteins that have been associated with cancer.

"This collaboration is another important strategic step in Abbott's oncology research program," said Jeffrey Leiden, president and COO at Abbott. "By combining Celera's leading-edge capabilities in proteomics and target discovery with Abbott's expertise in both small molecules and biologics, we believe that we will be able to deliver effective new therapies for the patients fighting certain cancers."

In reaction, shares of Abbott gained 6 cents, or 0.2%, to $39.85, while Celera gained 31 cents, or 2.8%, to $11.42.

Essentially, Celera will find the troublesome cancer-causing targets and Abbott will make the weapons to eliminate them. Under the terms of the agreement, the protein antigens found by Celera will be screened by Abbott, which will assess the potential for treatment. The companies can then elect to jointly fund clinical trials and would share the commercial results of the partnership.

If neither company elects to work on a product, then the terms of the deal will revert to a milestone and royalty structure. Furthermore, Celera will receive additional payments if a drug meets and completes a number of clinical milestones.

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