Takeda has taken a stake in the USA's Fate Therapeutics, a privately-held firm that specialises in stem cell research.

The "strategic investment" has been made via the Japanese drugmaker's corporate venture arm, Takeda Ventures, a move designed to expand its presence in regenerative medicine. Fate’s first therapeutic candidate is now in Phase Ib studies in haematopoietic reconstitution in patients with malignancies such as leukaemia and lymphoma.

Takeda says its new partner utilises "the most advanced biologics and reprogramming technologies for identifying promising points of therapeutic intervention". Fate, which is headquartered in San Diego, and has a subsidiary in Ottawa, Canada, has already secured backing from venture firms and the investment arms of Astellas and Genzyme Corp.

Graeme Martin, chief executive at Takeda Ventures, said Fate is a "world-leading company in stem cell science-based therapeutics, using the most advanced rare cell isolation and cell state characterisation technologies to elucidate disease biology and identify selective targets for biologics-based therapeutics". The size of the investment has not been disclosed.