AstraZeneca plc's deal for five clinical mAbs from Amgen Inc.'s inflammation and pulmonary portfolio puts the pharma close to its goal of getting 40% of its pipeline from external sources. For Amgen, last week's partnership frees up resources to allocate to other programs, including a cardiovascular and cancer pipeline the bellwether has said contains more assets than it can move into Phase III.

A driver of the deal is brodalumab (formerly AMG 827), a Phase III-ready human mAb against interleukin-17 (IL-17) receptor (IL17R; IL17RA) that has the potential for best-in-class efficacy. Last month, brodalumab met the primary endpoint of a greater percentage improvement in Psoriasis Area and Severity Index (PASI) score from baseline to week 12 vs. placebo in a Phase II trial in moderate to severe plaque psoriasis.