AbbVie orders $30M of Galapagos' IPO, Indivior aces schizophrenia trial, Gilead inks Danish deal

Welcome to the latest edition of our weekly EuroBiotech Report. Galapagos (AMS:GLPG) received a boost ahead of its upcoming Nasdaq IPO when AbbVie ($ABBV) placed a provisional order for $30 million (€26 million) in shares. The order--which could be seen as a sign AbbVie will take up its option on rheumatoid arthritis drug filgotinib or buy Galapagos outright--coincided with the Belgian biotech dialing up the expected haul from its offering. Danish biotech EpiTherapeutics attracted a big-name suitor of its own, snagging a $65 million buyout bid from Gilead Sciences ($GILD). The deal gives Gilead access to a pipeline of preclinical oncology assets based on science originating from the lab of Kristian Helin. Indivior (LON:INDV) stepped out of the shadow of its former parent company Reckitt Benckiser (LON:RB) by posting positive data from a Phase III trial in schizophrenia patients. The British midcap is now running an open-label extension to support a planned submission to FDA. Oxford BioMedica (AIM:OXB) took out a loan of up to $50 million--at a head-turning double-digit interest rate--to support its CAR-T alliance with Novartis ($NVS). Themis Bioscience raised €7 million and added a 20-year veteran of GlaxoSmithKline's ($GSK) vaccine unit to its board to step up its pipeline and business development activities. And more. Nick Taylor (email | Twitter)

1. Galapagos dials up IPO target as AbbVie asks for $30M stake

Galapagos has increased the amount it hopes to raise in its upcoming Nasdaq IPO to $230 million (€203 million) after AbbVie placed a provisional order for a $30 million stake. The order adds a subplot to the ongoing speculation about whether AbbVie will take up its $200 million option to buy into Galapagos' rheumatoid arthritis program or acquire the company outright.

2. Reckitt Benckiser spinout climbs after PhIII schizophrenia trial hits endpoints

Indivior has impressed with its first notable news since it spun out of Reckitt Benckiser late last year. The specialty pharma company reported that its schizophrenia drug RBP-7000 met the primary endpoint in a Phase III trial, moving it a step closer to its goal of winning FDA approval in 2017.

3. Gilead buys EpiTherapeutics to access Danish epigenetics expertise

Gilead Sciences has moved into epigenetic research by acquiring EpiTherapeutics for $65 million (€57 million) in cash. The deal gives it access to science originated at a team headed by Kristian Helin, a lauded oncology epigenetics expert and founder of Denmark's Biotech Research and Innovation Centre.

4. Oxford BioMedica takes out $50M loan to service Novartis CAR-T alliance

Oxford BioMedica has secured a $50 million (€45 million) loan, half of which it will take out immediately to expand its laboratory and manufacturing facilities. The first tranche of money will help OXB service its CAR-T alliance with Novartis.

5. Themis raises €7M, adds GSK vet to board as partnership plans gather pace

Themis Bioscience has raised €7 million ($7.8 million) and reshaped its board of directors as it prepares to start mid-phase trials and step up its partnership strategy. Wellington Partners led the round, which gives Themis the money to move its Chikungunya vaccine candidate into Phase II.

And more articles of note >>