Bristol-Myers Squibb licenses potential Alzheimer's drug to Biogen

An estimated 25 million people worldwide suffer from Alzheimer’s.
An estimated 25 million people worldwide suffer from Alzheimer’s. | File photo

Biogen has entered into a licensing agreement for BMS-986168 with Bristol-Myers Squibb to initiate Phase II studies for the antibody treatment for Alzheimer’s disease and progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP).

BMS-986168, an antibody, targets the protein that forms the deposits or tangles in the brain that are associated with Alzheimer’s and PSP. The protein, extracellular tau, is associated with neurodegenerative diseases of the brain.

“Biogen aims to be a leader in Alzheimer’s disease and we are building a pipeline with multiple approaches to address the complex, devastating process of neurodegeneration,” executive vice president of research and development Michael Ehlers said. “Based on encouraging safety and efficacy data, we believe BMS-986168 is a promising anti-tau candidate that may represent the next wave of medicines for Alzheimer’s disease as well as the first real answer for progressive supranuclear palsy.”

The addition of BMS-986168 continues Biogen's commitment to finding treatments for Alzheimer’s and rare neurological diseases. An estimated 25 million people worldwide suffer from Alzheimer’s, while three to six out of every 100,000 suffer from PSP. 

Under the terms of the agreement, Bristol-Myers Squibb will receive $300 million upfront plus milestone payments and royalties, while Biogen will receive worldwide rights to BMS-986168. Biogen will be responsible for the development and commercialization of the medication as well as assuming all remaining obligations to iPierian Inc.'s former stockholders. Bristol-Myers Squibb acquired iPierian in 2014.

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