Oncobiologics has announced a collaboration agreement with Xoma to develop novel biotherapeutics based on engineering single-chain variable fragments into a bi-specific antibody scaffold. Oncobiologics will use Xoma’s Adapt fully human antibody technology platform as a component of its drug discovery program. Financial terms of the collaboration were not disclosed.
Monthly Archives: July 2012
Merck Serono has announced the creation of Prexton Therapeutics, the first spin-off company resulting from its Entrepreneur Partnership Program launched in April 2012. Prexton Therapeutics will be formed around Merck Serono’s portfolio in the field of Parkinson’s disease and will focus on programs that target the metabotropic glutamate receptors mGluR3 and mGluR4. The company will develop the mGluR programs from lead optimization up to clinical Phase I and seek partnership and licensing opportunities for further development. The company will be hosted in the offices and laboratory of Eclosion, a biotech start-up incubator located in Plan-les-Ouates, Geneva. Merck Serono will invest €2.1 million as seed funding. Merck Serono Ventures will manage the investment and will be represented on the company’s board of directors.
Reuters reports that Pfizer will return all assets and regulatory and clinical responsibility relating to three products it was developing using Acura Pharmaceuticals abuse-resistant technology. Acura had received $78.5 million in payments from Pfizer under their 2007 license agreement. Acura’s shares fell heavily on the news.
Alnylam Pharmaceuticals has announced that it has earned a development milestone payment from GlaxoSmithKline, totaling $3.2 million. The milestone payment is related to progress in the companies’ collaboration on the use of VaxiRNA technology for the production of GSK influenza vaccine. Alnylam’s VaxiRNA platform uses RNAi technology for the enhanced manufacturing of vaccine products. Alnylam and GSK formed their collaboration in the fourth quarter of 2011. The effort is focused initially on influenza vaccine production in cell culture systems. If successfully applied in the manufacturing of commercial product, Alnylam will receive payments on unit product sales of commercialized vaccine product. In addition, GSK has obtained an option for VaxiRNA applications toward two additional vaccine products.
bluebird bio has announced the successful completion of a $60 million Series D financing. In this round, new investors Deerfield Partners, RA Capital, Ramius Capital Group, and two undisclosedpublic investment funds joined existing investors ARCH Venture Partners, Third Rock Ventures, TVM Capital, and Forbion Capital Partners. Shire joined the round as a strategic investor. Proceeds will be used to advance the company’s clinical programs in severe genetic disorders, including childhood cerebral adrenoleukodystrophy, beta-thalassemia and sickle cell disease.
Advinus Therapeutic and P2D Bioscience have announced the initiation of a research and development collaboration to develop therapies for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Further terms of the collaboration were not disclosed.
Chimerix has announced the execution of a license agreement granting Merck & Co exclusive worldwide rights to CMX157, Chimerix’s novel lipid acyclic nucleoside phosphonate currently being evaluated to treat HIV infection. Under the terms of the agreement, Merck receives an exclusive worldwide license and will be responsible for development and commercialization of CMX157, an investigational oral nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor. Chimerix will receive a $17.5 million upfront payment and will be eligible to receive up to $151 million in milestones, as well as royalties on future sales.
Chiasma has announced that it closed a $38.5 million equity financing co-led by new investor Abingworth and current investor MPM Capital that also included investments from existing shareholders 7 Med Health Ventures, ARCH Venture Partners, F3 Ventures and Fredric Price, Chiasma’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. The new investment is expected to provide funding for the completion of the Phase 3 pivotal program in acromegaly patients for Octreolin, Chiasma’s investigational oral form of the peptide octreotide, which is planned to be completed in the second quarter of 2013. It is also intended to finance a clinical study for the Company’s second product, a small molecule to be investigated as a possible treatment for a complication of chronic kidney disease.
Boehringer Ingelheim acquires global rights to Funxional Therapeutics’ FX125L compound and somatotaxin programme
Boehringer Ingelheim and Funxional Therapeutics have announced an agreement under which Boehringer Ingelheim will acquire the global rights to Funxional Therapeutics’ FX125L compound and somatotaxin programme. FX125L is a small molecule to treat a broad range of inflammatory diseases and was recently studied in a Phase 2 clinical trial in patients. Boehringer Ingelheim will be responsible for all further research, development and commercialisation of FX125L. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed.
Galapagos has announced that it has identified the first pre-clinical candidate compound in its osteoarthritis alliance with Servier. The compound inhibits a novel mechanism of action discovered by Galapagos. This triggered an undisclosed milestone payment to Galapagos. In July 2010, Servier and Galapagos announced their alliance to develop new oral medicines for the treatment of osteoarthritis. Galapagos is responsible for the discovery and development of new candidate drugs, and Servier has an exclusive option to license these after the completion of Phase I clinical trials. Galapagos retains exclusive US commercialization rights to all compounds discovered.