Novartis and Blackstone Life Sciences have launched new biopharmaceutical firm, dubbed Anthos Therapeutics, to develop new medicines for cardiovascular disease.
Based in Cambridge of Massachusetts, Anthos Therapeutics will develop and commercialize genetically and pharmacologically validated therapies for high-risk cardiovascular patient populations.
Anthos chairman and Blackstone Life Sciences head Dr Nick Galakatos said: “Blackstone Life Sciences is focused on bringing important medicines and healthcare technologies to market, often working in partnership with major biopharmaceutical companies to provide them with access to capital, scientific expertise and hands-on operational leadership.”
As part of the deal, Anthos Therapeutics has received license from Novartis for MAA86, which is an antibody directed at Factor XI and Xia. Both are crucial components of the intrinsic coagulation pathway.
MAA868 is believed to hold capacity to prevent different cardiovascular disorders with minimal or no bleeding risk within a new long-acting treatment paradigm.
Funds managed by private investment platform Blackstone Life Sciences has provided $250m for Anthos and will manage the development of the products. Novartis will be provided with a minority equity stake in Anthos.
Thrombotic disorders cause around 500,000 deaths each year, according to the American Heart Association. Thrombotic disorders will affect arteries or veins, and manifest as ischemic heart disease, ischemic stroke, peripheral artery disease, venous thromboembolism and other debilitating orphan diseases.
Novartis Institutes for BioMedical Research president Dr Jay Bradner said: “The need for new medicines to treat cardiovascular diseases is clear, and this agreement is part of our strategy to work with innovators outside our walls to advance medicines that have the potential to have a positive impact for patients.
“Blackstone Life Sciences has the necessary experience and has assembled a first-class team at Anthos to drive the further development of MAA868.”
In October 2018, Pfizer signed a non-exclusive clinical development agreement with Novartis to study one or more combination therapies for the treatment of non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH). The collaboration with Novartis helps Pfizer to explore combination approaches at an early stage.