BioMarin Pharmaceutical Inc.has entered into a stock purchase agreement to acquire LEAD Therapeutics, Inc. (LEAD), a small private drug discovery and early stage development company with key compound LT-673, an orally available poly (ADP-ribose) polymerase (PARP) inhibitor for the treatment of patients with rare, genetically defined cancers.
“The acquisition of LEAD Therapeutics will augment our development pipeline of orphan therapeutics. With LT-673 we see a tremendous opportunity to apply our expertise in developing therapeutics for genetic diseases to the field of oncology by targeting cancers with defined genetic mutations that make them susceptible to treatment with agents such as LT-673. There are attractive opportunities to treat rare cancers with PARP-sensitive mutations, as a single agent and in combination with other DNA damaging agents, and to improve on PARP inhibitors currently in development for more common tumor types,” said Jean-Jacques Bienaime, Chief Executive Officer of BioMarin. “We remain centrally focused on our core commercial business, the launch of amifampridine for LEMS in Europe and our Phase 2 PEG-PAL and GALNS development programs. We can now also look forward to an IND filing for LT-673 by the end of 2010.”
Hank Fuchs, M.D., Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer of BioMarin added, “PARP inhibitors have shown impressive survival benefits in cancer patients with tumors that have defects in DNA repair or in combination with DNA damaging agents. There are many opportunities to achieve selective lethality with PARP inhibitors in both rare and more common cancers. LT-673 has been proven to be highly active in mouse xenograft models of human cancer and appears to have favorable properties, including potency, selectivity, and bioavailability.”