Novartis (NYSE:NVS) has agreed to acquire Cadent Therapeutics, a privately owned neuroscience company based in Cambridge, Mass. Novartis plans to spend $210 million upfront with another $560 million in milestone payments.
The acquisition would give Novartis two neuroscience drugs in clinical development — one for schizophrenia and another for movement disorders. The transaction also includes a buyout of milestones and royalties from a clinical-stage molecule known as MIJ821 that could potentially be used for treatment-resistant depression.
In other news, Novartis recently won a positive review from an FDA advisory committee for sacubitril/valsartan (Entresto), which would be the first approved drug for heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF).
First obtaining FDA approval in 2015 for heart failure, Entresto could win a label expansion that is “extremely lucrative,” according to the data and analytics company GlobalData.
The FDA advisory panel voted 12 to one that the PARAGON-HF trial data supported the use of the drug in HFpEF patients.
“The strong majority vote demonstrates a solid endorsement of the label expansion, despite a narrow miss for the composite primary endpoint (reduction in cardiovascular death and total heart failure hospitalizations) in the PARAGON-HF trial,” said Fiona Chisholm, pharma analyst at GlobalData
Chisholm anticipates that Entresto could win a label expansion for HFpEF in the first quarter of 2021 if the FDA follows the panel’s advice.