Oct 31 Pharma News

AZ sells EU rights for Schizophrenia to Cheplapharm; Astellas, Pandion unite to extract the potential of immunomodulation; Pear therapeutics on a journey to develop digital GI treatments with Ironwood

AstraZeneca has announced the licensing-out of two of its drugs Seroquel and Seroquel XR in Europe and Russia to Cheplapharm Arzneimittel GmbH.

According to the deal signed between the companies, AZ will receive an upfront payment of USD 178 Million, in addition to other payments upon achieving sales milestones.

The patents of the drug variants Seroquel and Seroquel XR are soon expiring in Europe and Russia. However, the company will continue to manufacture and provide the drugs, primarily used to treat schizophrenia and bipolar disorder, to Cheplapharm during the transition period.

According to a published paper by McGrath J, Saha S, Chant D, Welham J, the Schizophrenia incidence was estimated to be around 1.5 per 10,000 people.

Pandion Therapeutics has collaborated with Astellas Pharma to advance R&D and commercialize immunomodulators for the treatment of auto-immune diseases of the pancreas and other drugs for Type-1 diabetes.

Under the terms of the agreement, Pandion will be responsible for the design and discovery of bispecific drugs through Pandion's proprietary modular immune effector and tissue tether platform.

The deal could yield nearly USD 45 Million to Pandion upfront and more than USD 750 Million as milestone development and commercial payments. Moreover, the company might also receive royalties on sales of commercial products worldwide. On the other hand, Astellas will be in authority of conducting preclinical, clinical and commercialization of the drug candidates.  

The companies’ main focus will be on treating Type-1 diabetes which results in deterioration of pancreas. Other autoimmune diseases that the collaboration will be working on are Systemic lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis.

Pear therapeutics and Ironwood Pharmaceuticals have collaborated to gauge the Prescription Digital Therapeutics (PDTs) for the treatment of selected Gastrointestinal (GI) diseases.

GI diseases are one of the Pear’s therapeutic areas and so far, the products for substance use disorder and opioid use disorder in the market. Through this agreement, the company is trying to increase its horizon of the pipeline beyond central nervous disorders.

Moreover, Ironwood’s marketed candidate Linzess (linaclotide), which it markets with Allergan and will soon be acquired by AbbVie for USD63 Billion. The drug is indicated for irritable bowel syndrome and chronic idiopathic constipation.

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