Oncothyreon, a Washington-based biotechnology company specializing in the development of innovative therapeutic products for the treatment of cancer, has acquired Alpine Biosciences, a Seattle, Wash.-based privately held biotechnology company developing protocells, a nanoparticle platform technology designed to enable the targeted delivery of multiple therapeutic agents, including nucleic acids, proteins, peptides and small molecules.
Oncothyreon intends to utilize the protocell technology to develop new product candidates for the treatment of cancer and rare diseases, either on its own or with partners.
"We believe the acquisition of Alpine and its protocell technology brings to Oncothyreon a delivery platform with the potential to revolutionize multiple therapeutic fields," said Robert L. Kirkman, M.D., president and CEO of Oncothyreon. “We also intend to seek partners to work with us to develop product candidates in other fields, including gene therapy, siRNA and mRNA therapy, enzyme replacement and the targeted delivery of toxins."
Jay Venkatesan, M.D., co-founder and CEO of Alpine, will join Oncothyreon as executive vice president and general manager, with primary responsibility for the protocell development program.
Oncothyreon issued approximately 9.3 million shares of Oncothyreon common stock in exchange for all of the outstanding stock of Alpine Biosciences. The issued shares represent approximately 10% of Oncothyreon's fully-diluted common stock on a post-transaction basis. The shares are subject to certain resale restrictions. Based on the closing price of Oncothyreon shares Aug. 8, the merger is valued at approximately $27 million.