Mechelen, Belgium; 24 July 2012 – Galapagos NV (Euronext: GLPG) announced today that it has identified the first pre-clinical candidate compound in its osteoarthritis alliance with Servier. The compound inhibits a novel mechanism of action discovered by Galapagos. This achievement triggered an undisclosed milestone payment to Galapagos.
In July 2010, Servier and Galapagos announced their alliance to develop new oral medicines for the treatment of osteoarthritis (OA). Galapagos is responsible for the discovery and development of new candidate drugs, and Servier has an exclusive option to license these after the completion of Phase I clinical trials. Galapagos retains exclusive US commercialization rights to all compounds discovered.
“OA is a disease of high unmet medical need, and progress of OA-therapies has been slow in the pharma industry. We therefore are very pleased to have delivered a pre-clinical candidate,” said Onno van de Stolpe, Chief Executive Officer of Galapagos. “This achievement also marks the third alliance with a different pharma partner in which Galapagos has identified a pre-clinical candidate. We are now starting with all the preparations to proceed further into Phase I.”
“It is a major achievement in this therapeutic area where no disease-modifying treatments are currently available,” said Bernard Marchand, Head of Discovery Research at Servier. “We are looking forward to seeing this compound hopefully enter the clinic after successful completion of the remaining pre-clinical requirements and are encouraged in our efforts to change the lives of people suffering from this debilitating disease.”
About Galapagos’ osteoarthritis alliance with Servier
The alliance between Servier and Galapagos builds on novel osteoarthritis drug targets discovered by Galapagos through its proprietary platform. For any marketed products, Servier will have the rights to development, registration and commercialization, but Galapagos retains exclusive U.S. commercialization rights. Galapagos is also eligible to receive discovery, development, regulatory and other milestone payments that could reach €290 million, plus royalties upon commercialization of products outside the U.S. covered under the agreement.
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis, typically affecting people aged 45 and older. It is a degenerative disease characterized by joint destruction and loss of cartilage. No currently available treatments prevent OA or even reverse or block the disease process. Treatment of OA involves weight control, exercise, and pain relief, most frequently with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that relieve the symptoms without changing the course of the underlying disease. Many OA patients have pain that persists despite these measures and often then have to undergo costly surgical procedures to replace their damaged joints. It is expected that with the aging of the population, more individuals will be prone to develop OA. As mobility of seniors is of high importance to maintaining a high quality of life, preventing the severity of OA is seen as an immense clinical need over the next decade.
Servier is a privately-run research based pharmaceutical company with a 2011 turnover of €3.9 billion. Servier is dedicating 25% of its turnover to Research & Development in cardiovascular, metabolic, neurological, psychiatric and bone and joint diseases as well as oncology. Servier is established in 140 countries worldwide with over 20,000 employees. More info at: www.servier.com
Galapagos (Euronext: GLPG; OTC: GLPYY) is a mid-size biotechnology company specialized in the discovery and development of small molecule and antibody therapies with novel modes-of-action. The Company is progressing its JAK1 inhibitor GLPG0634, as well as one of the largest pipelines in biotech, with four programs in development and over 30 discovery programs. The Galapagos Group has about 800 employees and operates facilities in six countries, with global headquarters in Mechelen, Belgium. More info at: www.glpg.com
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