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.
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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.
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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.