A week after licensing a novel gene therapy from Kate Therapeutics to treat X-linked myotubular myopathy, Astellas Wednesday announced a strategic collaboration with San Diego- and China-based Cullgen to develop multiple targeted protein degraders.

Astellas Pharma will license and further develop a gene therapy from Kate Therapeutics aimed at addressing XLMTM amid safety concerns about its own experimental XLMTM treatment.

The deal marks the fifth major overseas acquisition by Astellas, Japan’s third biggest drugmaker by sales, since 2019 in a push to shore up its pipeline as its main sellers lose patent protection.

The drug was being tested in combination with androgen deprivation therapy and Xtandi, made by Pfizer Inc and Astellas Pharma Inc., in patients with hormone-sensitive prostate cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.

Tokyo-based Astellas Pharma and South San Francisco-based Sutro Biopharma have inked a global collaboration and licensing deal aimed at the discovery and development of novel immunostimulatory antibody-drug conjugates (iADCs).

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has placed Astellas Pharma’s Phase I/II FORTIS trial on clinical hold after one of its study participants experienced a serious adverse event (SAE).