Johnson & Johnson Purchases Proteologix for $850 Million

Medicine

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In an $850 million deal, Johnson & Johnson will be acquiring Proteologix, Inc., a privately-held biotech company that specializes in bispecific antibodies for immune-mediated diseases.1 There is also the opportunity for an additional milestone payment.

The Proteologix portfolio features PX130, a bispecific antibody targeting IL-13 plus IL-22, which is in preclinical development for moderate to severe AD, and PX128, a bispecific antibody targeting IL-13 plus TSLP, which will be entering Phase I development for moderate to severe atopic dermatitis (AD), along with moderate to severe asthma. Targeting multiple pathways provides the best change for high-bar efficacy and remission, being that AD and asthma are both heterogeneous diseases that have different disease-driving pathways in different patient subpopulations.

PX128 reportedly helps to reduce IL-13-mediated Th2 skin inflammation—often known as a disease-driving pathway in both AD and asthma, along with TSLP, a mediator of tissue inflammation in AD and asthma.

PX130 also inhibits IL-13-mediated Th2 skin inflammation, just as PX128 does, while also inhibiting IL-22 to restore the skin and prevent inflammation from allergens.

“Atopic dermatitis is the most common inflammatory skin disease, impacting more than 100 million adults worldwide,” noted David Lee, global immunology therapeutic area head, Johnson & Johnson Innovative Medicine. “About 70% of patients using existing standard of care therapies do not reach remission.2 Current advanced therapies for AD either target a single pathway and have limited efficacy or are more broadly immunosuppressive, resulting in significant safety concerns. We see an opportunity for best-in-disease efficacy for both PX128 and PX130 as each bispecific antibody targets two different combinations of disease driving pathways that are mediating the skin inflammation in heterogenous subpopulations of AD patients.”

J&J added that the deal also sets the table for other bispecific antibody programs with applications across multiple diseases.

“Integrating Proteologix bispecific antibodies into our pipeline is an important first step in fulfilling our commitment to people living with AD,” said Candice Long, worldwide VP, immunology, Johnson & Johnson. “We plan to continue expanding our reach and impact for people living with a wide variety of immune-mediated diseases, leveraging more targeted options for them to reach durable, symptom-free remission.”

References

1. Johnson & Johnson to Acquire Proteologix, Inc. to Lead in Atopic Dermatitis Treatment. Johnson & Johnson. May 16, 2024. Accessed May 20, 2024. https://www.jnj.com/media-center/press-releases/johnson-johnson-to-acquire-proteologix-inc-to-lead-in-atopic-dermatitis-treatment

2. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27690741/

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