Chiesi acquisition takes it into rare disease therapy market

chiesi_logo The Chiesi group, through its UK affiliate, has acquired Danish company Zymenex, a specialist in biological therapies for rare and dangerous genetic diseases.

A notable Zymenex brand is Lamazyme, a therapy for alpha-mannosidosis, which Chiesi expects to retain.

Alpha-mannosidosis is a serious genetic disorder that can cause facial deformity and mental retardation.

The acquisition will enable Chiesi to establish an R&D position in the recombinant biologics market for rare diseases, while using its commercial expertise to bring these innovative treatments to patients worldwide.

The company is actively considering the opportunity to create a stand-alone rare disease unit in Europe and the US.

“We are excited to announce this transaction, which marks Chiesi’s entrance into the rare disease space and provides an opportunity to access high-potential markets,” said Ugo Di Francesco, CEO of Chiesi.

“By expanding our research and development assets and know-how, we believe we can successfully commercialise new and developing drugs to enhance our portfolio, expand our international footprint and strengthen our competitive position.

“Given the rarity of the condition and the importance of being close to the patients, we will consider setting up a stand-alone rare disease unit that would cover all major geographies, including the US.”

Sten Verland, Chairman of Zymenex, commented: “We believe that Chiesi through its regulatory expertise and worldwide commercial footprint has the resources needed to fully exploit the potential of Zymenex’ R&D for the benefit of patients with rare, serious, genetic diseases, for which there is no treatment available today.”

Based in Italy, Chiesi has 25 affiliates worldwide and has R&D centres in Parma, Paris, Rockville (US) and Chippenham (UK), with a focus on respiratory health and specialist medicine areas.