Swiss biopharma company AC Immune has announced its acquisition of a Parkinson’s disease vaccine candidate, developed by Affiris.
AC Immune is set to acquire Affiris’ entire portfolio of therapeutics targeting alpha-synuclein (a-syn), including Affiris PD01 – a vaccine candidate for the treatment of Parkinson’s disease.
Parkinson’s disease has been linked to the build-up and deposition of a-syn, a drug target that has been clinically validated using monoclonal antibodies.
Affiris PD01 is designed to generate a target-specific antibody response against pathological oligomeric a-syn.
Under the terms of the agreement, AC Immune is acquiring all of Affiris’ assets and underlying intellectual property related to its active vaccine candidates targeting a-syn for $5m in cash and $7.1m shares based on a price of $8.26 per share.
The Swiss company also announced a $25m private share placement with a group of investors led by Athos Service GmbH – one of the lead investors in COVID-19 vaccine maker BioNTech. Other investors included First Capital Partner GmbH and MIG Fonds.
“We believe very strongly that active vaccination will play an important role in the long-term management and possible prevention of neurodegenerative diseases,” said Andrea Pfeifer, chief executive officer of AC Immune.
“By acquiring a clinically validated vaccine programme against a-syn, we are advancing AC Immune to the forefront of Parkinson’s disease drug development, with a wholly-owned a-syn portfolio that now covers a full spectrum of treatment modalities addressing this well-characterised target,” she added.