Healthcare company Sanofi S.A. (NASDAQ:SNY) recently announced that it has entered into a research collaboration and license agreement with an AI-focused pharmatech company, Exscientia, to develop up to 15 novel small molecule candidates across oncology and immunology.
Following the news, shares of Sanofi rose 1.2% to close at $50.19 on Friday.
As per the terms of the deal, Sanofi will make an upfront cash payment of $100 million, which can go up to $5.2 billion upon the achievement of certain milestones.
The collaboration will involve the identification and selection of target projects by making use of Exscientia’s personalised medicine platform that integrates primary human tissue samples into early target and drug discovery research.
Further, Exscientia will lead small molecule drug design and lead optimization activities up to development candidate nomination. Meanwhile, Sanofi will be involved in preclinical and clinical development, manufacturing and commercialization of the candidates.
The Global Head of Research and Chief Scientific Officer of Sanofi, Frank Nestle, said, “Sanofi’s collaboration with Exscientia aims to transform how we discover and develop new small molecule medicines for cancer and immune-mediated diseases. Application of sophisticated AI and machine learning methods will not only shorten drug discovery timelines, but will also help to design higher quality and better targeted medicines for patients.”
The stock has a Moderate Buy consensus rating based on 1 Buy. Three months ago, J.P. Morgan analyst Richard Vosser reiterated a Buy rating on the stock with a price target of $119.3 (137.7% upside potential). Shares of the company have gained 4.5% over the past year.
News Sentiment for Sanofi is Neutral based on 15.25 articles over the past seven days. 100% of the articles have Bullish sentiment, compared to the sector average of 58%.
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