Wave Life Sciences Ltd. is partnering again. The company is getting $170 million up front – $120 million in cash and a $50 million equity investment – in a new partnership with GSK plc to advance oligonucleotides in unnamed targets. The agreement, which has a four-year research term, allows for GSK to advance up to eight programs using Wave Life’s platform and for Wave Life to advance three, or more if GSK approves, of its own collaboration programs.
Sotyktu (deucravacitinib), the tyrosine kinase 2 (TYK2) inhibitor for psoriasis from Bristol Myers Squibb Co., is “a good first-in-class” drug, said Nimbus Therapeutics LLC CEO Jeb Keiper, but his firm may have the best in class, ready for phase III trials. Takeda Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. apparently believes so. The company has agreed to pay $4 billion up front and pledge as much as $2 billion more in potential milestone payments to acquire Nimbus’s wholly owned subsidiary, Nimbus Lakshmi Inc., thereby bringing aboard the TYK2 prospect called NDI-034858.
The successful suitor for Horizon Therapeutics plc has been revealed as Amgen Inc., which will buy the Dublin-based company for $27.8 billion in cash in what is by far the year’s biggest acquisition. The deal brings successful biologics into Amgen’s portfolio that include Tepezza (teprotumumab), a monoclonal antibody targeting insulin-like growth factor 1 for treating thyroid eye disease, Krystexxa (pegloticase), a pegylated uricase enzyme for treating chronic refractory gout, and Uplizna (inebilizumab), a monoclonal antibody targeting insulin-like growth factor 1 for treating thyroid eye disease.
Erasca Inc. agreed to give Novartis AG $20 million cash up front and company shares (NASDAQ:ERAS) worth $80 million for an exclusive global license to naporafenib, a pan-RAF inhibitor for treating RAS/MAPK pathway-driven tumors, Erasca’s sweet spot. Erasca CEO Jonathan Lim told investors Dec. 9 that the therapy is complementary to the company’s portfolio, which includes 11 development programs targeting the pathway.
Arcellx Inc. signed a deal that could be worth almost $4 billion with Gilead Sciences Inc.’s unit Kite Pharma Inc. to push forward Arcellx's lead late-stage candidate CART-ddBCMA for relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma. The arrangement brings $225 million up front plus an equity investment of $100 million, along with as much as $3.9 billion in milestone payments. Arcellx CEO Rami Elghandour said the firm sorted through a number of suitors interested in the program. Data at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting “catalyzed a number of discussions and a broad set of interests. We felt of the possibilities out there, [Kite/Gilead is] the partner of choice in this space.”
In a massive deal that is one of the year’s biggest, Akeso Inc. signed a collaboration and license deal with Summit Therapeutics Inc. to out-license its bispecific antibody, ivonescimab (AK-112), for development and commercialization in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Japan.
Six months after a merger deal fell through, leaving the company to face possible bankruptcy, Therapeuticsmd Inc. agreed to license U.S. commercialization rights for its women’s health care products to Australian firm Mayne Pharma Group Ltd. in exchange for $140 million up front plus milestone and royalty payments.
Ryvu Therapeutics SA is banking €40 million (US$41.3 million) as an initial payment from a two-pronged alliance with Biontech SE, which involves a multitarget small-molecule research collaboration in immunotherapy and a license agreement for Ryvu’s portfolio of Sting agonists.
Horizon Therapeutics plc shares (NASDAQ:HZNP) jumped 27.3% to $100.29 after the company disclosed being in "highly preliminary" discussions about takeover interests expressed by Amgen Inc., Janssen Global Services LLC and Sanofi SA. The companies have until Jan. 10, 2023, to report whether they intend to make an offer or not.