USA – In a significant expansion of GSK’s respiratory biologics portfolio, the company has successfully concluded the acquisition of Aiolos Bio for a deal potentially reaching US$1.4 billion.  

This agreement, finalized last month, includes an upfront payment of US$1 billion along with US$400 million in regulatory milestone payments. 

The acquisition brings AIO-001, a long-acting anti-thymic stromal lymphopoietin (TSLP) monoclonal antibody, into GSK’s pipeline. 

This antibody, poised to enter Phase II clinical development, targets adults with asthma, offering the potential for extended dosing intervals, possibly every six months, due to its extended half-life and high potency.  

AIO-001 functions by attaching to the TSLP ligand, a critical player in asthma inflammation, thereby hindering its signaling pathway. 

This acquisition is particularly beneficial for the estimated 40% of severe asthma patients experiencing low Type 2 (T2) inflammation.  

With the addition of AIO-001, GSK reinforces its commitment to respiratory diseases, potentially reshaping standard care for asthma patients. 

 The company’s respiratory portfolio primarily focuses on therapies for diseases characterized by high eosinophil levels or high T2 inflammation.  

Integrating AIO-001 into this portfolio could offer a new therapeutic option for patients with low T2 inflammation, a subset of the severe asthma population. 

Furthermore, GSK will make success-based milestone payments and tiered royalty payments to Jiangsu Hengrui Pharmaceuticals, as Aiolos previously licensed development and marketing rights for AIO-001 from Hengrui for territories outside Greater China. 

Tony Wood, GSK’s chief scientific officer, expressed enthusiasm, stating, “Given the limited treatment options for asthma patients with low T2 inflammation, we look forward to using our deep respiratory expertise to potentially offer a long-acting biologic to a broader portion of the 315 million patients living with asthma.” 

This development follows GSK’s recent approval from the China National Medical Products Administration for Nucala (mepolizumab) as an add-on maintenance therapy for severe eosinophilic asthma in adults and adolescents aged 12 years and above. 

For all the latest healthcare industry news from Africa and the World, subscribe to our NEWSLETTER, and YouTube Channel, follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn, and like us on Facebook.