Astellas lines up Ogeda for acquisition in $853 million deal

pharmafile | April 3, 2017 | News story | Sales and Marketing Astellas, Ogeda SA, menopause 

Astellas, based in Tokyo, has announced that it has agreed a deal to acquire Belgium-based Ogeda SA. The deal will comprise of an up-front payment of $533 million, with a further $320 million dependent on milestones on Ogeda’s lead candidate.

Ogeda’s fezolinetant is a selective NK3 receptor antagonist, a non-hormonal treatment for menopause-related vasomotor symptoms, and has received positive data from Phase 2a trials. The trial met its primary endpoints, which were to demonstrate significant improvement over a placebo in 80 menopausal women suffering from hot flashes (HF/MR-VMS). The patients were found to experience a reduction in frequency of symptoms, with 86% reporting improvement when taking fezolinetant compared against 38% taking the placebo. Severity of HF was also reduced in 60% of patients compared against the baseline.

The drug is also currently going through three Phase IIa programmes to treat three different conditions: HF/MR-VMS, polycystic ovary syndrome and uterine fibroids.

“The transaction fits with our strategy to deliver innovative drugs in therapeutic areas with high unmet medical needs. Ogeda has been pioneering the development of a NK3 receptor antagonist fezolinetant for the treatment of MR-VMS”, commented Yoshihiko Hatanaka, President and CEO, Astellas. “We are committed to advancing science to deliver life changing medicines to people most in need. Astellas has a history of discovery and development of the unique medical treatments to improve patients’ quality of life. By leveraging this strength, we aim to deliver this potential new therapeutic option to those patients who are suffering from MR-VMS.”

The treatment, should it come to market, would be the first non-hormonal treatment for HF to reach the market. Astellas predicts that the acquisition will contribute to its mid-to-long term growth. The deal is expected to close in second quarter of 2017.

Ben Hargreaves

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