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Allergan to partner with Heptares in Alzheimer’s disease collaboration

Published on 07/04/16 at 09:08am

Bouncing back quickly from the collapse of the collapse of the Pfizer inversion deal, Allergan (NYSE:AGN) has announced a new R&D and commercialisation partnership with Heptares Therapeutics to develop novel treatments in Alzheimer’s and other neurological disorders.

This agreement will see Allergan license exclusive global rights to a broad portfolio of novel subtype-selective muscarinic receptor agonists in development for the treatment of neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s. The deal includes upfront payments to Heptares with milestone payments indicated for successful Phase I, II and III developments as well as the first three licensed compounds and royalties for annual sales thresholds.

Their focus will be heavily on the M1 and M4 receptors which are currently in Phase I clinical development and it is believed these compounds, discovered using Heptares’ proprietary StaR technology platform, offer much promise for the potential treatment of symptomatic cognitive defects in Alzheimer’s patients, among others.

David Nicholson, president of global brands research and development at Allergan, comments: “The Heptares M1 compounds have shown promising results in early development in their ability to selectively target the M2 and M3 receptors, which are associated with undesirable effects. We look forward to advancing these compounds into the next stages of development, and potentially adding new approaches to helping physicians treat patients suffering from the effects of Alzheimer’s disease.”

Malcolm Weir, chief executive officer at Heptares, says: “We are delighted that the quality of our muscarinic agonist candidates, discovered and developed wholly in house, and our translational capabilities have been recognised by Allergan… We look forward to working together towards the development of multiple new breakthrough medicines over the coming years.”

Sean Murray

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