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12:00 AM
 | 
Jan 01, 2007
 |  BioCentury  |  Strategy

Double-dipping on ProSkelia

When Galapagos N.V. was formed in 1999 as a functional genomics-focused joint venture between Introgene B.V. and Tibotec N.V., the idea was to combine Introgene's adenoviral vector technology with Tibotec's high throughput screening technology as a faster way to find gene function, particularly in the cardiovascular area. The resulting novel targets then would be licensed to pharma companies.

But such service businesses have never covered enough of the value chain to be sustainable, and so, along with virtually all of its surviving brethren from the genomics bubble, Galapagos has gradually moved into drug development.

Late last month, Galapagos (Euronext:GLPG; LSE:GLPG, Mechelen, Belgium) took a major step toward clinical development. The company said it would acquire ProSkelia S.A., the French drug discovery subsidiary of ProStrakan Group plc, for E12.5 million ($16.4 million) in stock. ProStrakan (LSE:PSK, Galashiels, U.K.) is eligible for E14.5 million ($19.1 million) in additional payments.

To help fund the deal, U.S. and European institutional investors put E31 million ($40.5 million) into GLPG in a private placement, enabling the company to close 2006 with about E51 million ($66.8 million) in cash (see B30).

GLPG will get four ProSkelia preclinical programs: an integrin receptor antagonist to prevent metastasis, an osteoclast adhesion receptor antagonist to treat osteoporosis, a selective androgen receptor modulator (SARM) to treat osteoporosis, and a SARM to treat...

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