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Celgene pens pact to join Bristol-Myers, Pfizer in R&D race

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10/05/2017 | 12:18pm CET

Celgene has secured an option on two preclinical assets in development at Nimbus Therapeutics. The deal gives Celgene a chance to move into the slipstreams of Bristol-Myers Squibb and Pfizer in the race to bring a TYK2 inhibitor to market.

TYK2 has attracted the interest of multiple major research groups on the strength of its role in the inflammatory response. Bristol-Myers has advanced its shot at the target, BMS-986165, into phase 2 trials in lupus and psoriasis. Pfizer is testing its TYK2-JAK1 kinase inhibitor, PF-06700841, in three phase 2 trials, which are enrolling patients with alopecia areata, ulcerative colitis and psoriasis.

Nimbus program has ceded a sizable head start to these drugs, but Celgene has seen enough in the preclinical data to suggest it can come from behind. That confidence is based, in part, on evidence Nimbus inhibitors are particularly selective for TYK2, enabling them to hit the target but not its JAK siblings.

The importance of TYK2 means there are plenty of opportunities to go around, too. A TYK2 inhibitor could treat autoimmune conditions including rheumatoid arthritis, Crohns disease and multiple sclerosis, as well as the indications being pursued in the clinic by Bristol-Myers and Pfizer.

We are excited about the potential of the Nimbus immunology targets, which are based on compelling human genetic data, Celgene R&D VP Robert Plenge, M.D., Ph.D., said in a statement. Moreover, Nimbus robust in silico-based approach is very promising.

That prompted the prolific dealmaker to put together an agreement that gives it an option to buy the program for an as-yet-undisclosed upfront payment and downstream milestones. The release of clinical trial data will trigger the buy-in decision on the TYK2 program and other assets covered by the deal. Nimbus is in charge of advancing the assets until Celgene exercises its option.

The second asset covered by the agreement is designed to block STING from activating the innate immune system in interferonopathies such as lupus. Nimbus agreement leaves it free to develop a small molecule agonist program with applications in immuno-oncology.

That immuno-oncology program is the only publicly disclosed part of Nimbus pipeline that is not yet the subject of a deal. Gilead and Genentech have already picked off other parts of the pipeline through an acquisition and licensing deal, respectively.

(c) 2017 AIN. All Rights Reserved. Provided by SyndiGate Media Inc. (Syndigate.info)., source Middle East & North African Newspapers

Stocks mentioned in the article
ChangeLast1st jan.
BRISTOL-MYERS SQUIBB COMPANY 0.53% 66.6 Delayed Quote.8.11%
PFIZER 0.55% 36.78 Delayed Quote.0.99%
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Financials ($)
Sales 2018 14 806 M
EBIT 2018 8 491 M
Net income 2018 5 264 M
Debt 2018 274 M
Yield 2018 -
P/E ratio 2018 13,21
P/E ratio 2019 11,00
EV / Sales 2018 4,59x
EV / Sales 2019 3,69x
Capitalization 67 628 M
Duration : Period :
Celgene Corporation Technical Analysis Chart | CELG | US1510201049 | 4-Traders
Technical analysis trends CELGENE CORPORATION
Short TermMid-TermLong Term
Income Statement Evolution
Mean consensus OUTPERFORM
Number of Analysts 30
Average target price 119 $
Spread / Average Target 32%
EPS Revisions
Mark J. Alles Chairman & Chief Executive Officer
Scott Andrew Smith President & Chief Operating Officer
Peter N. Kellogg Executive VP, Chief Financial & Accounting Officer
Joseph S. Camardo Senior Vice President-Global Medical Affairs
Rupert J. Vessey President-Research & Early Development
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