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VectivBio expands rare disease pipeline

Swiss rare disease specialist VectivBio Holding AG is taking over US biotech Comet Therapeutics Inc. for an undisclosed amount. Comet focusses on treatments for metabolic diseases.

Under the terms of the agreement, VectivBio will acquire Comet Therapeutics in exchange for equity and cash payable at closing, as well as additional equity or cash payments upon the achievement of certain specified future development milestones. Massachusetts-based Comet is adding its CoMET platfrom to VectivBio’s pipeline, which is aimed at addressing Inherited Metabolic Diseases (IMDs) with deficit of energy metabolism and depletion of functional Coenzyme A. The technology aims to address IMDs by targeting the key cellular dysfunctions that underlie these conditions. Comet currently is working on four, with plans to enter the clinic with the first programme in the next 18 months.

IMDs are severe rare genetic disorders caused by congenital defects of metabolism fundamental to energy generation and the survival of cells. They affect over 75,000 patients in the US and Europe, and they occur in 1 in 800 births. They are a significant cause of mortality in infants and young people.

“The acquisition of the CoMET platform is in line with our core mission of developing disease-modifying treatments for rare severe diseases,” said Luca Santarelli, founder and Chief Executive Officer of VectivBio. “The platform’s potential to deliver a pipeline of medicines that target the fundamental molecular pathophysiology of IMDs by unlocking previously inaccessible pathways, would provide us with the opportunity to transform the lives of these patients. We are eager to begin work on our new programmes and look forward to progressing our first candidate towards the clinic.”

The transaction is expected to close by the end of September 2021.