Fierce Pharma Asia—Shionogi's Qpex buy; Takeda's rare disease win; AbbVie's patent suit against BeiGene

Shionogi will pay $100 million upfront to purchase an infectious disease company. Takeda unveiled more data to back its enzyme replacement therapy for a rare heart disease. AbbVie's BTK patent infringement lawsuit against BeiGene may have merit, according to a patent expert. And more.

1. Fierce Biotech M&A Tracker 2023: Shionogi buys Qpex for $100M; Erytech and Pherecydes plot merger

Shionogi is bolstering its infectious disease portfolio by paying $100 million upfront to buy Qpex. The acquisition gives the Japanese company xeruborbactam, a beta-lactamase inhibitor that’s designed to target the mechanism behind resistance to beta-lactam antibiotics such as penicillin. Shionogi believes the drug may provide improved activity in combination with other antibiotics.

2. After data breadcrumbs, Takeda shows elimination of deadly blood clot attacks for rare disease drug

Takeda has laid out detailed data for its ADAMTS13 enzyme replacement therapy TAK-755 in patients with congenital thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura (CTTP), a rare disease. The disorder can be fatal and is characterized by sudden attacks. But interim results from a phase 3 trial showed that patients taking the drug as a preventive measure didn’t have any acute TTP attacks.

3. AbbVie's Imbruvica-Brukinsa patent suit may have merit, and BeiGene will likely settle: expert

AbbVie may succeed in its BTK patent infringement case against BeiGene, a patent attorney told SVB Securities. BeiGene could try to invalidate the method of use patent, but the expert thinks it’d be difficult based on how narrow the patent is and its extensive “prior art” list. The expert predicted that BeiGene will likely settle the case by paying AbbVie sales-based royalties.

4. Eisai launches Gates-backed research collab to develop digital tools for dementia diagnosis, treatment

In a new research collaboration dubbed NEURii, Eisai, Gates Ventures, the University of Edinburgh, Health Data Research UK and LifeArc, which is a nonprofit medical research organization, have joined forces to develop digital health tools to predict and monitor cases of dementia. A two-year pilot period will focus specifically on the U.K. Artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies will help analyze the massive databases to help the partners design new tools.

5. Generics to Novartis' leukemia drug Tasigna to reach poor countries under 4 MPP licenses

Under a previous license Novartis penned with the Medicines Patent Pool, four generic drug makers have signed on to produce copycat versions of the Swiss pharma’s myeloid leukemia blockbuster Tasigna for some low- and middle-income countries. BrightGene of Indonesia and three Indian manufacturers—Dr. Reddy’s, Eugia and Hetero—will make and supply their generic versions to 44 territories.

6. Pfizer partners with CSPC to make Paxlovid for China (Bloomberg)

China’s CSPC Pharma said it signed a partnership with Pfizer to make a Chinese brand of the oral COVID drug Paxlovid. The deal comes after Pfizer didn’t reach a national reimbursement agreement with Chinese authorities. Pfizer has previously tapped local generic drug maker Zhejiang Huahai Pharmaceutical to help manufacturer Paxlovid.