EuroBiotech Report—J&J-Genmab, Sobi-Novimmune, ReViral CEO, ADC financing and Vertex

Map of Europe

Welcome to the latest edition of our weekly EuroBiotech Report. We start this week with Genmab, which revealed it is working on a successor to its blockbuster multiple myeloma drug Darzalex. Johnson & Johnson, which has the rights to Darzalex, has secured a $150 million option on the follow-up drug. Elsewhere, Sobi overhauled its R&D operation, buying immunology R&D capabilities from Novimmune and shutting down its early-stage activities in non-core areas. ReViral named Alex Sapir as CEO. ADC Therapeutics added $76 million to its series E haul. The Orkambi saga spurred discussion in the U.K. of who funds R&D. And more. — Nick Taylor
1. J&J bags $150M option on Genmab's Darzalex successor 

Genmab and Johnson & Johnson have teamed up to develop a successor to their multiple myeloma blockbuster Darzalex. The deal gives J&J the option to license the asset after clinical proof of concept for $150 million (€132 million) plus milestones and royalties. 
2. Sobi to buy Novimmune R&D assets, lay off 90 staff 

Sobi is exiting drug discovery and early research outside of hematology and immunology, putting 90 people out of work. The Swedish biopharma unveiled the news alongside the CHF 515 million ($518 million) acquisition of immunology R&D capabilities from Novimmune. 
3. RSV specialist ReViral hires ex-Dova leader as CEO 

ReViral has named Alex Sapir as CEO. Sapir arrives at the midphase respiratory syncytial virus specialist six months after abruptly leaving Dova Pharmaceuticals. 
4. ADC Therapeutics bumps up series E by $76M

ADC Therapeutics has expanded its series E by $76 million, bringing the financing to $276 million and its total haul to $531 million. The cash will advance the company’s pipeline of pyrrolobenzodiazepine-based antibody-drug conjugates, including an FDA submission for its lead program in 2020.
5. Orkambi debate in U.K. revives the myth of a people-funded drug

A cystic fibrosis drug has been approved for use in the U.K. since 2016 but is still being denied to patients over its cost. Now, the question over who is really responsible for its costly creation has arisen. 
And more articles of note>>