AbbVie and Alvine Pharmaceuticals, a developer of celiac disease therapeutics, have entered a global collaboration to develop a novel oral treatment for patients with celiac disease, currently in phase II development.
This collaboration builds on AbbVie's experience in gastroenterology with its on-market products to treat Crohn's disease, ulcerative colitis and diseases associated with exocrine pancreatic insufficiency.
"Celiac disease is an area with significant unmet medical need," said Scott Brun, M.D., vice president, pharmaceutical development, AbbVie. "Patients who currently are unable to completely avoid gluten in their diets could potentially benefit from this promising investigational treatment.”
AbbVie will make an initial upfront payment of $70 million for an exclusive option to either acquire the assets relating to ALV003 or the equity of the company. Alvine will maintain responsibility for phase II clinical development, and upon successful completion of the approximately 500-patient phase IIb study, AbbVie may exercise its option. Alvine also will be entitled to receive a milestone payment upon AbbVie's initiation of phase III development.