Oct. 20, 2022, AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV) today announced the acquisition of DJS Antibodies Ltd ("DJS"), Under the terms of the agreement, AbbVie will pay DJS shareholders approximately $255 million in cash at closing for the acquisition of DJS. DJS shareholders remain eligible for potential additional payments upon the achievement of certain development milestones related to the success of the DJS-002 program. AbbVie anticipates retaining all current DJS employees and its facility in Oxford.
DJS's proprietary HEPTAD platform is a novel approach to antibody discovery with specific capabilities targeting transmembrane protein targets. A key benefit of this acquisition is for AbbVie, through DJS, to access the HEPTAD platform as a complement to its current robust capabilities in biotherapeutics research. DJS will leverage AbbVie's extensive drug discovery expertise to continue generating antibody therapeutics and novel biology insights against targets like GPCRs, which have previously been intractable to biologics approaches.
DJS's lead program is DJS-002, a potential first-in-class lysophosphatidic acid (LPA) receptor 1 (LPAR1) antagonist antibody currently in investigational preclinical studies for the treatment of Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis (IPF) and other fibrotic diseases. IPF is an aggressive, high mortality disease caused by fibrotic scarring in the lungs and remains an area of high unmet medical need.
"We are excited to bring the innovative science behind DJS-002 and the talented team at DJS to AbbVie," said Jonathon Sedgwick, Ph.D., vice president and global head of discovery research, AbbVie. "This acquisition will deliver new capabilities to enhance our current antibody research activities, an opportunity to strengthen our immunology portfolio, and provide a strong foothold for expanded research efforts in the dynamic bioscience hub in Oxford, UK."
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