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Alkermes plans to advance its investigational new drug-enabling capabilities for lead preclinical assets in the Rodin development candidate portfolio.
Alkermes, an Ireland-based biopharmaceutical company focused on developing medicines for central nervous system (CNS) diseases and oncology, announced it will acquire Rodin Therapeutics, a Boston, MA-based biopharmaceutical company focused on the development of small-molecule therapeutics for synaptopathies, in a deal worth up to $950 million.
Through the acquisition, Alkermes plans to advance its investigational new drug-enabling capabilities for lead preclinical assets in the Rodin development candidate portfolio, according to a Nov. 18, 2019 press release. Rodin is focused on developing orally available, brain-permeable therapeutics for synaptopathies by designing molecules that target specific histone deacetylase (HDAC) complexes, which includes a preclinical research program for the subset of frontotemporal dementia patients with an inherited mutation of the progranulin gene and exploratory work in hematological disorders and oncology. Alkermes plans to continue the program.
"Building on our broad experience in psychiatry, we believe this transaction will allow us to explore a wide array of neurodegenerative diseases and synaptopathies, which have been areas of significant interest to us as we have advanced our internal pipeline of medicines for CNS disorders. HDAC inhibitors are powerful epigenetic regulators that have therapeutic potential to address some of the most disruptive clinical symptoms that accompany neurogenerative diseases," commented Richard Pops, CEO of Alkermes, in the press release. "This investment is reflective of our longstanding commitment to bring new and innovative therapeutic options to patients living with chronic CNS diseases where the unmet medical need is high."
Rodin will receive an upfront cash payment of $100 million upon closing and will be able to receive future payments of up to $850 million upon achievement by Rodin's development candidates of certain specified clinical and regulatory milestones, and attainment of certain sales thresholds, according to the release.
"Rodin's targeted approach to strengthening synaptic integrity is backed by a robust translational strategy and may have potential across multiple diseases which are characterized by impaired neuronal and synaptic function," added Adam Rosenberg, CEO of Rodin, in the press release. "With its proven ability to develop novel medicines for the treatment of CNS disorders, we believe Alkermes is ideally suited to advance this exciting new approach to neurologic diseases and bring potential new treatment options to patients that may benefit from Rodin's synaptogenic platform."
The transaction is expected to be completed by the end of November 2019.