BMS & BridgeBio team up in nearly $1B oncology pact
Published: May 12, 2022
By Vanessa Doctor, MS
The two companies will work together on BBP-398, an SHP2 inhibitor that has the potential to address difficult-to-treat cancers. The drug was created through the partnership between BridgeBio and the Therapeutics Discovery unit of The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. SHP2 has the ability to regulate cell proliferation and survival, and overactivity has been found to contribute to many types of cancer and suppress anti-tumor immunity.
BridgeBio’s licensing deal with Bristol Myers Squibb will utilize BBP-398 combined with Opdivo (nivolumab) for patients who have advanced solid tumors with KRAS mutations.
“We are grateful to be expanding our collaboration with Bristol Myers Squibb, a leader in oncology, and we believe this agreement will allow us to reach even more patients with difficult-to-treat cancers. We believe our SHP2 inhibitor has the potential to be a best-in-class agent given the data we have seen, and we are eager to see our monotherapy and combination trials progress in collaboration with our partners at Bristol Myers Squibb,” commented Neil Kumar, Ph.D., founder and CEO OF BridgeBio, in a statement.
Prior to BMS, BridgeBio partnered with LianBio in Mainland China to develop and commercialize the drug in combination with other agents to treat solid tumors such as colorectal, pancreatic and non-small cell lung cancers. It also has an agreement with Amgen to combine the drug with Lumakras (sotorasib) to address advanced solid tumors with KRASG12C mutations.
The latest deal with Bristol Myers Squibb will bring $90 million to BridgeBio as an upfront payment in addition to $815 million in regulatory, development and sales milestone payments. Tiered royalties are also expected to hit the low- to mid-teens. Under the terms of the agreement, BridgeBio will continue with its Phase I monotherapy and combination trials for BBP-398. BMS will lead and finance all other research and commercial efforts.
“We have seen the potential role SHP2 inhibition could play in unlocking possible combination therapies to treat patients suffering from a range of cancers. We are hopeful this collaboration with BridgeBio will help us maximize the possibilities SHP2 inhibition with BBP-398 will hold for patients,” noted Rupert Vessey, executive vice president for research and early development at BMS.
The deal is a breath of fresh air for BridgeBio, which in April announced it is laying off staff and members of leadership due to the disappointing outcome of its Phase III Attribute-CM study of acoramidis for symptomatic transthyretin amyloid cardiomyopathy.
In response to the layoffs, Dr. Kumar previously told BioSpace, “This is part of a necessary and ongoing cost reduction process. We are sorry to see our colleagues go – a great number of whom contributed significantly to our mission to serve patients.”