BMS Furthers its Immuno-Oncology Pipeline with Nearly $1.6 Billion in Investments

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Bristol-Myers Squibb announced that it reached an agreement to acquire Flexus Biosciences and has entered into a $309-million partnership with Rigel Pharmaceuticals.


Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) announced on Feb. 23, 2015 that it reached an agreement to acquire Flexus Biosciences for $800 million upfront, with the potential for an additional $450 million in milestones and development. Flexus, a privately held biotechnology company focused on novel anti-cancer therapeutics, will hand over full rights to BMS for its preclinical small molecule Indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase-1 (IDO1)-inhibitor, F001287.

BMS will expand its immuno-oncology pipeline with the acquisition of Flexus’ full IDO/Tryptophan 2,3-dioxygenase (TDO) discovery program, including the IDO-selective, IDO/TDO dual, and TDO-selective compound libraries. As part of the agreement, BMS will also acquire all non-IDO/TDO assets, current personnel, and facilities. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2015. 


BMS also announced on Feb. 23 that it would further its immuno-oncology pipeline by partnering with Rigel Pharmaceuticals to collaborate on discovery, development, and commercialization of cancer immunotherapies based on Rigel’s portfolio of small molecule TGF beta receptor kinase inhibitors. The terms of the agreement state that BMS will gain exclusive rights to small molecule therapeutics from Rigel’s TGF beta library, including those approved to treat cancer. BMS will pay $30 million upfront with a potential of up to $309 million in milestones, and Rigel will be eligible to receive tiered royalties on the net sales of products involved in the collaboration, according to a press release.

Source: BMS