R&D Partnerships, M&A, Ventures & IPOs by TA – Neurology – Q1 Review 2024

R&D Partnerships, M&A, Ventures & IPOs by TA – Neurology – Q1 Review 2024

In Q1 2024, the neurology sector saw significant activity across R&D partnerships, M&A, ventures, and IPOs, gathering billions in investments and strategic collaborations. Key high points include Voyager’s deal with Novartis for Huntington’s disease, potentially worth up to $1.2 billion. Boehringer Ingelheim partnered with Sosei Heptares on schizophrenia treatments, involving $825 million. Praxis and Tenacia’s agreement for essential tremor in China could be worth $279 million. M&A activity included Mediforum’s $300 million reverse merger with Vision Sensing Acquisition Corp, Bora Pharmaceuticals’ $210 million acquisition of Upsher-Smith, and Telix’s $14 million acquisition of IsoTherapeutics. In ventures, Engrail Therapeutics raised $157 million in a Series B for PTSD and neurodegenerative diseases, Latigo Biotherapeutics secured $135 million in a Series A for nonopioid pain medication, and Neurona Therapeutics garnered $120 million in a Series E for cell therapies targeting epilepsy and Alzheimer’s. GE HealthCare raised $1.07 billion in public markets to advance AI integration in cardiovascular and neurological conditions. Denali Therapeutics secured $500 million via PIPE for neurodegenerative disease treatments like ALS. Longboard Pharmaceuticals raised $242 million for therapies targeting epilepsy and CNS disorders.


R&D Partnerships – Neurology

R&D Partnerships - Neurology


In 2024 YTD, neurology companies secured 28 R&D partnerships worth up to $4.7 billion, with $200 million upfront in cash and equity.


Neurology R&D Partnerships Q1 2024

Voyager and Novartis Expansion Deal – January 2024

Voyager has granted Novartis worldwide rights to develop gene therapies using Voyager’s TRACER capsids for Huntington’s disease (HD) and spinal muscular atrophy (SMA). Voyager will receive $20 million upfront and $80 million in equity, with potential milestone payments of up to $200 million for SMA and $225 million for HD in development and regulatory milestones. Sales milestones could bring up to $400 million for SMA and $375 million for HD.

Boehringer Ingelheim and Sosei Heptares Partnership – March 2024

Boehringer Ingelheim has partnered with Sosei Heptares, securing an exclusive, worldwide option to license GPR52 agonists, including HTL-0048149, for treating schizophrenia. Sosei Heptares will receive EUR 25 million (approx. $27 million) upfront and EUR 60 million (approx. $66 million) in option exercise fees. They are also eligible for up to EUR 670 million (approx. $732 million) in milestones and royalties.

Praxis Precision Medicines and Tenacia Biotechnology – January 2024

Praxis has granted Tenacia exclusive, worldwide rights to develop and commercialize Ulixacaltamide for treating essential tremor in China, including Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan. Praxis will receive $5 million upfront and $10 million in Praxis’s common stock, along with up to $264 million in development, regulatory, and commercial milestones, plus royalties.


M&A – Neurology

M&A - Neurology

In Q1 2024, neurology companies completed 13 M&A deals valued at $700 million vs full-year 2023 where 32 deals were signed worth $35.2 billion with contingents and $33.3 billion without contingents.

Neurology M&A’s Q1 2024

Mediforum Reverse Merger with Vision Sensing Acquisition Corp – January 2024

Mediforum is reverse merging with Vision Sensing Acquisition Corp in a SPAC transaction. The combined company will be listed on NASDAQ under a new ticker, with a pre-money enterprise value of $250 million and an additional $50 million in PIPE equity or debt financing. Vision Sensing extended the deadline to complete the business combination to June 3, 2024.

Bora Pharmaceuticals Acquiring Upsher-Smith – January 2024

Bora Pharmaceuticals is acquiring Upsher-Smith, whose leading assets include Klor-Con, Vagifem, Vogelxo (for atrophic vaginitis and hypogonadism), Vigadrone, and Qudexy (for neurologic diseases). Upsher-Smith will receive $210 million upfront for the acquisition.

Telix Acquiring IsoTherapeutics – February 2024

Telix is acquiring IsoTherapeutics, specializing in radiopharmaceutical development and manufacturing services for bone pain. IsoTherapeutics will receive $2 million in upfront cash and $6 million in 823,481 shares of Telix’s common stock. Additionally, IsoTherapeutics is eligible for up to $5 million in milestones and an extra $0.6 million in revenues.

Ventures – Neurology

Ventures - Neurology

In Q1 2024, neurology companies raised 18 venture funding rounds, totaling $900 million vs full-year 2023, when 54 rounds raised $2.6 billion.


Neurology Ventures Q1 2024

Engrail Therapeutics – Series B – $157M – March 2024

Engrail Therapeutics, a precision neuroscience firm, has closed an oversubscribed $157 million Series B financing round, co-led by F-Prime Capital, Forbion, and Norwest Venture Partners. With total funding exceeding $220 million since 2019, Engrail aims to advance its pipeline through various clinical stages, targeting conditions such as anxiety disorders, depression, PTSD, and neurodegenerative diseases.

Latigo – Series A – $135M – February 2024

Latigo Biotherapeutics Inc., a clinical-stage biotechnology firm, has emerged from stealth mode with a $135 million Series A financing round led by Westlake Village BioPartners, 5AM Ventures, and Foresite Capital, with participation from Corner Ventures. The funding will be used to develop nonopioid pain medication, including their lead program, LTG-001, an oral, selective Nav1.8 inhibitor. LTG-001 is undergoing a Phase 1 clinical trial to address acute and chronic pain by targeting Nav1.8, crucial in pain signaling in the peripheral nervous system.

Neurona – Series E – $120M – February 2024

Neurona Therapeutics, a San Francisco biotech company, has secured an additional $120 million to support its research on cell therapies for brain diseases. The funding will advance various experimental “off-the-shelf” cell therapies, including NRTX-1001, currently under evaluation in a small, open-label study for a type of epilepsy with potential applications in Alzheimer’s disease and other nervous system disorders.


IPOs, Follow-ons – Neurology

IPOs, Follow-ons - Neurology

During Q1 2024, neurology companies completed 45 IPOs, raising $200 million and following up with follow-on offerings worth $3.6 billion. Full-year 2023 saw 114 IPOs raising $300 million and follow-on offerings totaling $4.0 billion.


Neurology IPOs Q1 2024

GE HealthCare – Common Stock – $1.07B – February 2024

GE Healthcare (Nasdaq: GEHC) priced a public offering of 13 million shares at $82.25 each, adding about $1.07 billion. The net price is $80.6 per share after underwriting discounts. Shares will be exchanged for GE indebtedness held by Morgan Stanley. The offering is expected to close on February 21, 2024. GE Healthcare integrates patient data using AI for conditions like cardiovascular diseases and neurological disorders.

Denali Therapeutics – PIPE – $500M – February 2024

Denali Therapeutics, focused on neurodegenerative diseases like ALS, will raise $500 million through a private financing deal with existing investors, boosting its cash to around $1.5 billion. It will sell over 3 million shares at $17.07 each and issue warrants for more than 26 million shares at $17.06 each. The cash position is expected to last into 2028.

Longboard Pharmaceuticals – Common Stock – $241.5M – February 2024

Longboard Pharmaceuticals (LBPH), which specializes in treatments for neurological disorders, completed a public offering of 12 million shares, including 1.5 million from the underwriters’ option, at $21 each, totaling approximately $242 million before deducting expenses. Their lead programs target G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) for conditions like epilepsy and other CNS disorders.

All of this by stage, disease indication, modality, target…

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