Arrowhead Pharmaceuticals Inc (NASDAQ:ARWR) recently signed a partnership deal worth $3.7 billion with Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) for hepatitis B Product ARO-HBV. Incidentally, toxicity issues forced Arrowhead to abandon its old EX1platform. Now the company is using new TRiM platform that comes with the ability to get rid of a number of diseases.
As a part of the deal, Johnson & Johnson will receive an exclusive worldwide license for ARO-HBV and also a chance to negotiate with Arrowhead about its three new products under development from TRiM platform. Apart from getting the fund from the American pharmaceutical company, Arrowhead also stands to gain royalties on potential commercial sales.
Arrowhead may divert some upfront payment to treat AATD disease
This new deal can help the company to move ahead quickly in its program as it is going to receive around $175 million in the form of upfront payment. The company can divert this fund to develop the clinical products. Currently, in the pipeline, these products are different from the Hepatitis B product for which it is partnering with Johnson & Johnson. The company at present is also planning to come up with a product to treat Alpha-1 antitrypsin deficiency (AATD) which is in a Phase ½ study.
AATD is a genetic disease in which patients have to deal with liver or lung problems. Other probable drugs in the pipeline are for renal cell carcinoma, cystic fibrosis, and hypertriglyceridemia, and more. Rather this extra cash that it is receiving from the American multinational medical devices company will provide it the much needed extended period to full fledge develop the products in the pipeline without any need to raise additional capital. Johnson and Johnson is quite confident that Arrowhead will succeed in its efforts.
Collaboration validates TRiM™ Platform
According to the president and CEO of Arrowhead, Christopher Anzalone, Ph.D. “The collaboration also represents further validation of the TRiM™ platform and provides an important opportunity to create up to three additional novel medicines by leveraging Arrowhead’s speed and expertise in RNAi drug discovery and Janssen’s clinical development and commercial capabilities.” Johnson & Johnson will be entirely responsible for the commercialization as well as the clinical development of ARO-HBV.