Gilead & Galapagos collaborate to create R&D leader

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Galapagos has announced a multi-billion dollar 10-year research and development collaboration with Gilead to create a global R&D leader based in Europe, developing and commercialising breakthrough therapies to patients.

Through this agreement, Gilead will gain access to an innovative portfolio of compounds, including six molecules currently in clinical trials, more than 20 preclinical programs and a drug discovery platform.

Galapagos will receive a $3.95 billion upfront payment and a $1.1 billion equity investment from Gilead. Galapagos will use the proceeds to expand and accelerate its research and development programs.

Gilead will receive an exclusive product license and option rights to develop and commercialise all current and future programs in all countries outside Europe. In addition, the companies have agreed to amend certain terms in the agreement governing filgotinib, the candidate being advanced for rheumatoid arthritis and other inflammatory diseases to provide a broader commercialisation role for Galapagos in Europe.

The collaboration will allow for closer scientific partnership between the companies. Gilead will have access to Galapagos’ established research base, which includes more than 500 scientists, and also to its unique platform that utilises disease-related, human primary cell-based assays to discover and verify novel drug targets.

Gilead will also nominate two individuals to Galapagos’ Board of Directors following the closing of the transaction.

As part of the collaboration, Gilead gains rights to GLPG1690, Galapagos’ Phase 3 candidate for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Gilead also receives option rights for GLPG1972, a Phase 2b candidate for osteoarthritis, in the United States.

Both GLPG1690 and GLPG1972 are first-in-class compounds and could offer important mid- and late-stage pipeline opportunities. In addition, Gilead receives option rights on all of Galapagos’ other current and future clinical programs outside of Europe.

Daniel O’Day, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Gilead, said: “We chose to partner with Galapagos because of its pioneering target and drug discovery platform, proven scientific capabilities and outstanding team.”

Onno van de Stolpe, Chief Executive Officer of Galapagos, said: “We will benefit greatly from Gilead’s expertise and infrastructure and believe this collaboration will provide an accelerated path to advance our pipeline.”