AbCellera Announces Multi-Year Antibody Discovery Collaboration with Lilly

May 22, 2020

 AbCellera will use its world-leading antibody drug discovery platform in a multi-year collaboration to identify antibodies against up to nine targets

VANCOUVER, British ColumbiaAbCellera announced today that it has entered into a multi-year strategic research collaboration and license agreement with Eli Lilly and Company (Lilly) on the discovery of antibodies for up to nine Lilly-selected therapeutic targets. Lilly will have the rights to develop and commercialize therapeutic products resulting from the collaboration.

AbCellera and Lilly were in discussions about the multi-target agreement in early 2020 when the COVID-19 pandemic emerged. The companies worked quickly to focus the initial scope of the collaboration on creating antibody therapeutics for the possible prevention and treatment of COVID-19. Lilly will select up to eight additional targets during the multi-year agreement.

“Lilly chose to partner with AbCellera because of their novel technology platform, and it has enabled the rapid identification of lead antibody candidates for our COVID-19 efforts. We’re excited to now apply it to other therapeutic targets,” said Daniel Skovronsky, M.D., Ph.D., Lilly’s chief scientific officer and president of Lilly Research Laboratories. “AbCellera’s capabilities and team are extremely impressive and we are proud of the progress we’ve made together thus far.”

Applying best-in-class technology and custom innovation to each project, AbCellera partners with leading pharma and biotech to enable programs for any target class. With more than 55 successfully completed programs, AbCellera is transforming the field of biologics by reducing the time it takes to identify lead candidates and advance new products towards the clinic.

“By working together seamlessly, our teams have moved with unprecedented speed, and have advanced from antibody discovery to a lead candidate for human testing in months instead of years,” said Carl Hansen, Ph.D., CEO of AbCellera. “We look forward to expanding our collaboration with Lilly, working together to continue to redefine how antibody treatments reach the patients who need them.”

Under the terms of the agreement, AbCellera received an up-front payment and will receive research payments for the non-COVID-19 targets. AbCellera is also eligible to receive pre-clinical, clinical, and commercial milestones and tiered royalties on future sales.

About AbCellera Biologics Inc.

AbCellera is a privately held biotech with a drug discovery platform that searches and analyzes natural immune systems to find antibodies that can be used to prevent and treat disease. AbCellera’s technology, which combines high-throughput microfluidics, big data, machine learning, bioinformatics, and genomics, identifies new first-in-class drugs and reduces the time it takes to bring treatments to clinic. AbCellera's partners include leading biotechnology companies, global health organizations and many of the top 10 biopharmaceutical companies. For more information, visit


Jessica Yingling;, +1.236.521.6774 (AbCellera Media)

Kevin Heyries;, +1.604.559.9005 (AbCellera Business Development)