J&J's Mathai Mammen at an Endpoints News event in Boston, June 2018 (Photo: Rob Tannenbaum for Endpoints News)

J&J fronts $750M cash to grab a failed can­cer drug that’s been re­pur­posed as a pow­er­ful an­ti-in­flam­ma­to­ry

J&J has stepped up with one of its block­buster drug buys, agree­ing to pay Austin-based XBiotech $XBIT $750 mil­lion in cash and up to $600 mil­lion more in mile­stones for their late stage-ready an­ti-in­flam­ma­to­ry drug bermekimab — which some long­time biotech ob­servers may rec­og­nize as a failed can­cer ther­a­py with a dis­as­ter-prone past.

The drug tar­gets the IL-1a path­way. J&J $JNJ R&D chief Math­ai Mam­men is cut­ting a check for a drug that has pro­duced pos­i­tive mid-stage da­ta in pa­tients suf­fer­ing from a skin con­di­tion called hidradeni­tis sup­pu­ra­ti­va with an­oth­er mid-stage pro­gram un­der­way for atopic der­mati­tis.

That puts J&J in charge of a drug on the thresh­old of piv­otal — though pricey — R&D work for a broad pa­tient group with oth­er re­lat­ed fields to ex­plore. And it’s a very busy de­vel­op­ment are­na.

Endpoints News

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