With the transaction, the British drugmaker will obtain Caelum’s potential fibril-reactive monoclonal antibody (mAb) CAEL-101 for the treatment of light chain (AL) amyloidosis
AstraZeneca, through its company Alexion, is set to acquire the remaining equity stake in Caelum Biosciences for up to $500m.
In 2019, Alexion has initially entered into a partnership with Caelum, where it acquired a minority equity stake and an exclusive option to acquire the remaining equity in Caelum.
The company currently executes its option to acquire the remaining equity in Caelum.
Upon closing of the transaction, Alexion will pay an option exercise price of around $150m, which is expected to occur in the next month.
Also, it will make potential additional payments of up to $350m, contingent on achieving certain regulatory and commercial milestones.
As part of the deal, Caelum’s parent organisation Fortress Biotech is expected to receive around 43% of the transaction proceeds.
Alexion chief executive officer Marc Dunoyer said: “With a median survival time of less than 18 months following diagnosis, there is an urgent need for new treatments for this devastating disease.
“CAEL-101 has the potential to be the first therapy to target and remove amyloid deposits from organ tissues, improve organ function, and, ultimately, lead to longer lives for these patients.”
With the transaction, the British drugmaker will obtain Caelum’s potential fibril-reactive monoclonal antibody (mAb) CAEL-101 for the treatment of light chain (AL) amyloidosis.
AL amyloidosis is a rare disease characterised by abnormal aggregation of antibody proteins in organs, leading to organ damage and failure, and may turn fatal.
CAEL-101 is intended to improve organ function by reducing amyloid deposits in the tissues and organs of patients with AL amyloidosis.
It has received Orphan Drug Designation from both the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the European Commission as a potential therapy for AL amyloidosis.
Also, the drug has been granted the US FDA Fast Track Designation in June 2021.
CAEL-101 is currently being studied in the Cardiac Amyloid Reaching for Extended Survival (CARES), a Phase 3 clinical programme in AL amyloidosis.
In addition, the drug is being studied in two ongoing parallel Phase 3 trials in patients with Mayo stage 3a disease and Mayo stage 3b disease, respectively.
Alexion AstraZeneca Rare Disease, is a business unit of AstraZeneca focused on rare diseases, created after the acquisition of Alexion Pharmaceuticals in July this year.