BridgeBio augments comeback week with sale of priority review voucher
Published: May 13, 2022
By Alex Keown
One day after BridgeBio Pharma struck a nearly $1 billion oncology pact with Bristol Myers Squibb, the California-based company announced plans to sell a priority review voucher it gained in February. BridgeBio gained the voucher when the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved Nulibry, the first therapy to reduce mortality in patients with molybdenum cofactor deficiency (MoCD) Type A.
BridgeBio, which initiated a round of layoffs last month, said it would sell the voucher for $110 million. The Palo Alto-based company did not disclose the identity of the company planning to acquire the voucher. The voucher can be used to accelerate the review period of potential drugs set under the Prescription Drug User Fee Act. With the coupon, the FDA can act upon the review of a drug candidate within six months, as opposed to the standard 10 to 12-month review period.
Nulibry was co-developed with Origin Biosciences Inc. MoCD Type A is an ultra-rare and progressive condition. There are approximately 150 people across the globe with this condition. MoCD Type A presents shortly after birth, often with severe encephalopathy and intractable seizures. The median survival for this disease is about four years.
Brian Stephenson, the chief financial officer of BridgeBio, said the sale of the voucher will enable the company to advance its drug development pipeline aimed at genetic diseases and different cancers. In connection with the voucher sale agreement, BridgeBio executed an amendment to a loan agreement that will extend its interest-only period by two years to 2026.
“We believe this deal, coupled with our amended loan agreement, offers us the opportunity to read out more data within the duration of our debt and advance meaningful medicines to patients in need in the years to come,” Stephenson said in a statement.
The sale of the voucher comes one day after the announcement of the BMS that centers on the development of BBP-398, an SHP2 inhibitor that has the potential to address difficult-to-treat cancers. As BioSpace reported, SHP2 has the ability to regulate cell proliferation and survival.
Overactive SHP2 has been found to contribute to multiple types of cancer. BMS will pair the BridgeBio asset with Opdivo (nivolumab) for the treatment of patients with advanced solid tumors with KRAS mutations.
BMS isn’t the only company BridgeBio has forged a partnership with this year. In January, the company teamed up with Amgen to develop solid tumor treatments. That partnership also focuses on BBP-398. Amgen intends to pair the SHP2 inhibitor with Lumakras (sotorasib) as a potential treatment for solid tumors with the KRAS G12C mutation. Amgen’s Lumakras is a KRASG12C inhibitor.