Lundbeck To Acquire Abide Therapeutics in $400-Million Deal

By Patricia Van Arnum - DCAT Editorial Director

May 9, 2019

H. Lundbeck A/S, a Valby, Denmark biopharmaceutical company, has agreed to acquire Abide Therapeutics, a San Diego, California-based clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company, for $250 million upfront and up to $150 million in future development and sales milestones.

The acquisition provides Lundbeck a discovery platform and a US based research hub. Abide has developed a platform to discover selective serine hydrolase inhibitors. Serine hydrolases are a class of enzymes that include lipases, esterases, thioesterases, amidases, peptidases and proteases and that play roles in many pathophysiological processes, including blood clotting, digestion, nervous system signaling, inflammation and cancer.

Abide’s lead molecule, ABX-1431, is a potent selective inhibitor of the serine hydrolase monoacylglycerol lipase (MAGL) that potentiates endocannabinoid signaling to restore homeostatic balance in the central nervous system, according to information from the companies. It has the potential to address multiple indications in psychiatry and neurology and is initially being explored in clinical trials for the treatment of Tourette syndrome (Phase IIa) and for neuropathic pain (Phase I).

In addition to the clinical and preclinical programs targeting MAGL, Abide has a pipeline of inhibitors targeting other serine hydrolases that may be pursued as future treatments to neurological and/or psychiatric disorders. The chemo-proteomic platform may also be further expanded to characterize other enzyme systems within the serine hydrolase family, leading to the development of additional active agents that modify enzyme function.

After closing, Abide’s laboratory in La Jolla, California will become a US drug-discovery hub for Lundbeck.

The Board of Directors of Abide has unanimously approved the transaction. The transaction is expected to close during the second quarter of 2019, subject to the receipt of customary regulatory approvals, including expiration or termination of the waiting period under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Act in the US.

Source: Lundbeck