Orrick Advises Sosei Heptares on Multi-Target Collaboration with AbbVie


We advised Sosei Heptares, an international biopharmaceutical company and world-leader in G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) focused structure-based drug design and development (SBDD), on its new drug discovery collaboration and option-to-license agreement to discover, develop and commercialize small molecules that modulate novel GCPR targets associated with neurological disease with Abbvie, a research-based global biopharmaceutical company.

The new agreement will leverage Sosei Heptares’ StaR® technology and SBDD platform and AbbVie’s extensive neuroscience and disease area expertise. The agreement expands the breadth of the ongoing collaboration between Sosei Heptares and AbbVie, building on the first multi-target discovery agreement signed between the companies in June 2020, which is focused on the inflammatory and autoimmune disease areas.

Under the terms of the new agreement, Sosei Heptares will conduct and fund R&D activities through the completion of Investigational New Drug (IND)-enabling studies. AbbVie has the exclusive option to license up to three programs at this stage and will have responsibility for clinical, regulatory and commercial development thereafter. Sosei Heptares receives an upfront payment of US$40 million on signing and is eligible to receive up to US$40 million in near-term research milestone payments expected over the next three years, as well as further potential option, development and commercial milestones totalling up to US$1.2 billion, plus tiered royalties on global sales.

The Orrick team that advised Sosei Heptares included David Schulman, Ed Dyson, Gargi Talukder, Daniel Kadin and Tiffany Chiu Leung.