Heptares Therapeutics, Pfizer partner for GPCR-focused drug discovery
Heptares Therapeutics and Pfizer have signed a drug discovery collaboration agreement, focused on G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) targets across several therapeutic areas.
Under the collaboration, the companies will research and develop potential new medicines directed at about 10 GPCR targets.
Heptares will apply its GPCR structure-guided platform to help offer stabilized GPCRs (StaR proteins), high-resolution crystal structures and other technologies for supporting the discovery of potential new therapies directed to the GPCR targets to be selected by Pfizer.
Pfizer will oversee development and commercialization of any potential therapeutic agents for every target. The company will also have exclusive worldwide rights to any potential resulting agents from the collaboration.
Under the terms of the deal, Heptares will receive an undisclosed initial payment, milestones of up to $189m per target and tiered royalties on commercial sales.
Heptares CEO Malcolm Weir said: “This strategic collaboration with Pfizer, spanning as it does many targets and indications, is another significant achievement for Heptares and recognises the potential clinical benefit that may be realisable through the combination of our continuing leadership in GPCR structure-based design technology and Pfizer’s global therapeutic drug discovery and development capabilities.”
Apart from the collaboration deal, Pfizer Seiyaku KK has agreed to purchase $33m of newly issued common stock of Heptares parent firm Sosei Group at a premium of 25% to the average closing price during the 20 days preceding the closing date, which is expected to occur this month.
The investment, which will represent about 3.02% of Sosei share capital, is subject to review by Japanese financial authorities.