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Sosei Heptares to regain rights from AbbVie to muscarinic agonist programmes targeting neurological diseases

Sosei Heptares is to regain its worldwide rights to its muscarinic agonist programmes.

These were licensed in April 2016 by Allergan, which was acquired by AbbVie in May 2020.

Sosei Heptares (25549707)
Sosei Heptares (25549707)

Sosie Heptares, which has an R&D base at Granta Park, said its decision was “based on business decisions regarding AbbVie’s pipeline strategy and not on any efficacy, safety or other data related to the collaboration programs”.

The company plans an internal review by February to determine a strategy for developing the programme and finding a new partner.

Shinichi Tamura, chairman, president and CEO of Sosei Heptares, said: “We are delighted to regain rights to this portfolio of novel subtype-selective muscarinic receptor agonists (M4, M1 and dual M1/M4 agonists), including several clinical and preclinical candidates with substantial data associated. We enjoyed a productive relationship with Allergan over the course of our muscarinic agonist collaboration and continue to work positively with AbbVie on a new program in inflammatory diseases that we announced in June last year.

“The considerable progress that we made together with Allergan has reinforced our view in the potential of this approach to create important new products that treat severe and debilitating symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, schizophrenia and other neurological diseases. We are also encouraged by the growing industry interest and validation of this novel approach to treating these diseases.

“In addition, the R&D collaboration has generated a diverse pipeline of next-generation, selective muscarinic agonists with novel chemistry that have benefitted from insights gained in clinical trials and from advanced drug design technologies. These new and differentiated candidates exhibit highly attractive properties for further development.

“The value of the selective M1 agonists was enhanced with a signal observed in early clinical trials of HTL0018318, and in addition we have been advancing the development of such agonists with novel chemistry. We will decide which selective M1 agonist program to prioritise after further study.”

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