EuroBiotech Report—Roche scraps drug, Gilead-Hookipa, Adaptimmune data, Servier office and Enyo financing

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Welcome to the latest edition of our weekly EuroBiotech Report. We start this week with Roche, which called time on spinal muscular atrophy drug olesoxime after running into "many difficulties." The decision comes three years after Roche paid Trophos €120 million ($140 million) to bag the asset. Gilead bolstered its hepatitis B and HIV R&D activities by licensing technology from Hookipa Biotech. Adaptimmune posed data on its GlaxoSmithKline-partnered cancer drug. Servier opened an office in Kendall Square. Enyo Pharma raised €40 million. And more. Nick Taylor  

1. Roche scraps €120M SMA drug after hitting ‘many difficulties’

Roche has stopped development of the spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) drug it acquired for €120 million ($140 million) upfront three years ago. The Swiss pharma is walking away from olesoxime after running into “many difficulties in developing” the oral mitochondria-boosting drug. 

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2. Gilead, Hookipa pen hepatitis B, HIV research collaboration

Gilead has licensed immunization technologies from Hookipa Biotech for use against hepatitis B and HIV. The big biotech is paying $10 million (€8.5 million) up front and committing to milestones that could exceed $400 million to snag exclusive rights to two technologies in the indications.

3. ASCO: Adaptimmune builds case for GlaxoSmithKline-partnered T-cell therapy

Adaptimmune has presented updated clinical data on its T-cell therapies. The latest readouts link the GlaxoSmithKline-partnered NY-ESO SPEAR T-cells to a 50% partial response rate in heavily pretreated cancer patients and position Adaptimmune to dial up the dosing of two wholly owned assets.

4. Servier opens Kendall Square site, plans Chinese office to access external innovation

Servier has opened a site in Kendall Square and staffed it with people from Biogen and the University of Massachusetts to find R&D and licensing opportunities. News of the office opening comes shortly after the French firm stepped up its U.S. strategy with a $2.4 billion deal for Shire’s oncology unit.

5. Enyo Pharma raises $47M to bring hepatitis B, NASH drug to phase 2

Enyo Pharma raised €40 million ($46.9 million) to fund the launch of its first two phase 2 clinical trials of its lead candidate, EYP001, in chronic hepatitis B and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, by the end of the year.

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