Novartis entered an agreement to acquire Cadent Therapeutics. Cadent Therapeutics was launched by merging Luc Therapeutics and Ataxion Therapeutics to develop small drug molecules that target neuronal ion channels.
According to the agreement, Novartis will get the exclusive rights on the NMDAr program, CAD-9303, and MIJ-821. The other asset is CAD-1883, which is in Phase II development for movement disorders. Cadent will receive a $210 million upfront payment followed by a $560 million based on the milestones.
By this acquisition, Novartis will add two new clinical-stage drugs to its neurology portfolio: one for schizophrenia and the other for movement disorders. Novartis is currently overseeing the development of MIJ821, a treatment for drug-resistant depression. The drug acts by modulating the subset of NMDA receptors.
The transition is expected to complete in the first quarter of 2021.