Allergan’s new $85M buyout adds a cosmetic drug to a growing portfolio


Allergan is racking up another new deal in the wake of its broken merger with Pfizer. Thursday evening the company announced a deal to buy Boston-based Topokine Therapeutics for $85 million up front.

The buyout gives Allergan a late-stage drug dubbed XA5F, which is designed to smooth and erase bulging bags under the eye. That kind of drug will fit in neatly with Allergan’s cosmetic drug portfolio.

Allergan also committed to an unspecified set of development and sales milestones.

Allergan has its sights set on a market of some 40 million Americans with a condition called steatoblepharon. Topokine ran a mid-stage study of the drug and launched a pivotal trial back in January. 

Allergan, run by CEO Brent Saunders, has been adding to a pipeline of cosmetic therapies that can augment its blockbuster Botox therapy. Allergan bought Kythera and its double-chin busting drug last year for $2.1 billion.

The company also has a much tougher task involved in developing drugs for CNS conditions. The same day that Allergan and Pfizer formally called off their merger, the Dublin-based company inked a $3.3 billion licensing deal for a portfolio of drugs for neurological disorders from the U.K.’s Heptares.

This new addition to the pipeline today also fits neatly into Saunders’ development model, which focuses on bagging drugs just ahead of the crucial late-stage test. 

"XAF5 has the potential to be the first topical fat reduction product for the treatment of steatoblepharon, a condition with no current therapeutic options available for patients,” said David Nicholson, the EVP and president of global brands R&D at Allergan, in a news release. “We look forward to continuing the outstanding development work conducted by the Topokine team to bring this innovative medical aesthetic treatment to market."

- here's the release