Concert Pharmaceuticals’ deuruxolitinib is an oral inhibitor of Janus kinases JAK1 and JAK2, which is currently in late-stage development for the treatment of Alopecia Areata, an autoimmune dermatological disease


US-based Concert Pharmaceuticals to be acquired by Sun Pharma. (Credit: Thought Catalog on Unsplash)

Sun Pharmaceutical Industries (Sun Pharma) has signed a definitive agreement to acquire US-based Concert Pharmaceuticals for $576m in an all-cash deal to gain access to deuruxolitinib, the latter’s investigational drug for Alopecia Areata.

Under the terms of the deal, India-based Sun Pharma will offer $8 per share to shareholders of the publicly-listed Concert Pharmaceuticals.

Concert Pharmaceuticals’ stockholders will also be eligible to get a non-tradeable contingent value right (CVR), which allows them to get an additional $3.5 per share in cash subject to the achievement of certain net sales milestones by deuruxolitinib.

The investigational drug is an oral inhibitor of Janus kinases JAK1 and JAK2 and is currently in late-stage development.

Sun Pharma North America CEO Abhay Gandhi said: “Sun Pharma is building a global Dermatology and Ophthalmology franchise and aims to be a preferred development and commercial partner in these therapies worldwide.

“The acquisition of Concert adds a late-stage, potential best-in-class treatment for Alopecia Areata in deuruxolitinib.

“There is a significant unmet need in the Alopecia Areata space and we aim to build on Concert’s commitment to supporting the Alopecia Areata patient community. We are well-positioned to successfully bring this product to market globally.”

In the THRIVE-AA phase 3 clinical programme, Concert Pharmaceuticals assessed the efficacy and safety of deuruxolitinib in adult patients with moderate to severe Alopecia Areata, noted Sun Pharma.

The Indian pharmaceutical firm said that additional, two open-label, long-term extension studies of the investigational drug are currently being conducted in North America and Europe.

Concert Pharmaceuticals intends to submit a new drug application (NDA) to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the drug candidate in the first half of 2023.

Concert Pharmaceuticals president and CEO Roger Tung said: “Our mission at Concert has always been to translate innovative science to clinical solutions in order to meaningfully improve patients’ lives.

“We are proud to see our team’s accomplishment – creating a valuable new drug candidate for a major, underserved disease – appropriately recognised and valued by Sun Pharma as a means to expand their ongoing, international commitment to dermatology

Expected to close in Q1 2023, the deal is subject to regulatory approvals and other customary conditions.