arGEN-X and LEO Pharma sign deal to develop antibody-based treatments for skin conditions

Dutch biotechnology company could potentially receive nearly €105m in payments

Dutch biotech arGEN-X and global Danish healthcare company LEO Pharma have formed an alliance in which they will jointly develop antibody-based drugs for the treatment of chronic inflammation underlying many skin conditions.

Under the terms of the agreement LEO Pharma receives exclusive access to an arGEN-X antibody currently in preclinical development for such skin conditions. arGEN-X also receives pre-IND payments of €4.5m, including an upfront payment and will also receive clinical, regulatory, and sales milestone payments potentially worth €100m, plus tiered royalties.

The companies will co-fund product development costs up to clinical trial application (CTA) filing. Additional terms and financial details were not disclosed.

Tim Van Hauwermeiren, Chief Executive of arGEN-X said: 'We see huge potential in this new partnership in harnessing the complementary expertise of both companies: arGEN-X’s advanced knowledge and capabilities in therapeutic antibody development and LEO Pharma’s global expertise in bringing products to market that meets the needs of dermatology patients.'

Thorsten Thormann, Senior Vice President, New Product Discovery at LEO Pharma, said the alliance 'marks our entry into the area of biotherapeutics for dermatology'.

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