MorphoSys has acquired the Dutch biopharmaceutical company Lanthio Pharma. Morphosys already held 19.98% of Lanthio Pharma and will now pay €20M to purchase all outstanding shares. Thanks to the transaction MorphoSys can add Lanthio Pharma’s lead compound, LP2, to its growing proprietary portfolio.

The compound, a novel lanthipeptide in development for diabetic nephropathy and fibrotic diseases, will be re-named MOR107 and is planned to enter clinical trials in 2016. LP2 has demonstrated potent angiotensin II type 2 (AT2) receptor-dependent activity in vivo. The compound has the potential to be a first-in-class treatment for various fibrotic diseases and thus represents a commercially attractive opportunity for MorphoSys.

The company will pay €20M to acquire the outstanding share capital of Lanthio Pharma from the other investors. Amongst them are INKEF Capital, BioGeneration Ventures and Hanzepoort. The German company has followed Lanthio’s developments since the beginning of their relationship, when MorphoSys made its initial equity investment in November 2012 as part of Lanthio Pharma’s Series A financing round.

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Jens Holstein

Jens Holstein

Jens Holstein, Chief Financial Officer of MorphoSys, stated: “Today’s news marks another milestone for our Innovation Capital initiative that led to this acquisition. We will continue to look for opportunities to invest and collaborate with biopharmaceutical start-ups to strengthen our drug development capabilities and enrich our proprietary drug portfolio.

Last month, the share price of Morphosys brutally tumble when they announced the end of their collaboration with Celgene. This new acquisition could be a way to confort the market with the German leading Biotech’s future.

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