Eli Lilly will acquire CoLucid Pharmaceuticals, a public biopharmaceutical company, for about $960 million and will enhance Lilly’s existing portfolio in pain management for migraine, while adding a potential near-term launch to its late-stage pipeline.
Indeed, CoLucid Pharmaceuticals is developing Lasmiditan, an oral medication for the acute treatment of migraine, which has already completed the first of two pivotal Phase 3 trials, if also the second Phase 3 trial, expected in the second half of 2017, will be positive, submission to the U.S. regulatory approval could occur in 2018.
The developing of such drug is quite strategic for two main reasons: firstly, the potential target is considerably vast with more than 36 million people suffer from migraine in the United States alone, secondly Lasmiditan, if approved, would be a first-in-class therapy to treat migraine without mechanism of vasoconstriction. This open opportunitie towards another market so far closed to migraine treatment: patients who have, or are at risk for, cardiovascular disease.
Lasmiditan was originally discovered at Lilly but in 2005 was out-licensed to CoLucid, as in those years Lilly didn’t consider pain management a strategic area. However, since then Lilly has changed focus and is now putting more research and development efforts into migraine as part of its emerging therapeutic area of pain.
That’s why 12 year after it is back in Lilly’s s pipeline together with galcanezumab, a potential medicine in Phase 3 clinical development for the prevention of migraine and cluster headache and tanezumab, studied in collaboration with Pfizer, for the treatment of osteoarthritis, lower back and cancer pain.
“Lasmiditan is a novel, first-in-class molecule that could represent the first significant innovation for the acute treatment of migraine in more than 20 years, and CoLucid has made significant progress in advancing this potential medicine,” said David A. Ricks, Lilly’s president and chief executive officer. “This innovation, along with galcanezumab, could offer important options for the millions of patients suffering from migraine.”
The transaction is expected to close by the end of the first quarter of 2017, subject to clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act and other customary closing conditions
Source: The Wall Street Journal