USA—AbbVie, the sixth largest pharmaceutical company in sales and headquartered in North Chicago, Illinois, has announced the acquisition of Landos, a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical business focused on the discovery of innovative oral therapies for autoimmune diseases.

This acquisition aligns with AbbVie’s strategy to bolster its drug pipeline, especially in response to competition to its top-selling drug, Humira, in the U.S. market.

The acquisition will see AbbVie purchasing Landos for $20.42 per share, totaling approximately $138 million, with an additional contingent value right worth $11.14 per share, or another $75 million, contingent upon meeting certain milestones.

This represents a premium of about 155% to Landos’ closing stock price on Friday.

Currently, the Phase 2 NEXUS clinical trial evaluating NX-13 in ulcerative colitis (UC) is enrolling patients in the United States and Europe (NCT05785715)

Landos is currently conducting a mid-stage trial of NX-13 in ulcerative colitis, with AbbVie expressing interest in its potential for Crohn’s disease as well.

Landos’ primary investigational asset is NX-13, an oral NLRX1 agonist, representing a first-in-class treatment option with a bimodal mechanism of action that is anti-inflammatory and promotes epithelial repair.

NLRX1 plays a crucial role in regulating immunometabolism and inflammation, impacting various mechanisms involved in inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) pathogenesis.

Roopal Thakkar, M.D., Senior Vice President and Chief Medical Officer, Global Therapeutics at AbbVie, emphasized that this acquisition aims to advance the clinical development of NX-13, a differentiated, first-in-class oral asset with potential benefits for people living with ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.

Gregory Oakes, President, and CEO of Landos, expressed pride in the company’s talented team and their mission to develop oral treatments addressing therapeutic gaps.

He highlighted NX-13’s potential to offer a novel approach to treating ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, emphasizing AbbVie’s expertise in global development as a key factor in further advancing NX-13.

AbbVie already sells two blockbuster treatments to treat different types of IBD: Rinvoq, which is approved for ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease, and Skyrizi, which is only approved for ulcerative colitis.

The Landos acquisition is anticipated to close in the second quarter.

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