Allergan expands dermatology portfolio with Topokine acquisition

Allergan paid $85 million in an upfront payment and success-based development and sales milestones for XAF5

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DUBLIN, Ireland & BOSTON—Allergan plc is furthering expanding its footprint with the acquisition of Topokine Therapeutics, a privately held clinical-stage biotechnology company developing topical medicines for fat reduction. Per the terms of the transaction, Allergan has acquired Topokine for an upfront payment of $85 million and success-based development and sales milestones for XAF5, a first-in-class topical agent from Topokine in late-stage development as a potential treatment for steatoblepharon, or under-eye bags.
"The acquisition of Topokine and its XAF5 technology adds an innovative technology to Allergan's industry leading mid-to-late stage pipeline of more than 70 programs and bolsters our leadership in medical aesthetics," David Nicholson, executive vice president and president of Global Brands Research & Development at Allergan, said in a press release. "XAF5 has the potential to be the first topical fat reduction product for the treatment of steatoblepharon, a condition with no current therapeutic options available for patients. We look forward to continuing the outstanding development work conducted by the Topokine team to bring this innovative medical aesthetic treatment to market."
XAF5 is currently in clinical trials, with Topokine having initiated XOPH5-OINT-3, a pivotal Phase 2b/3 study of XAF5, in January. The topical agent is applied once a night, and penetrates the skin to act pharmacologically on fat cells to shrink under-eye bags. In XOPH5-OINT-2, a Phase 2 randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial, XAF5 met its primary endpoint by achieving statistically significant and clinically meaningful reductions in under-eye bags. Some 40 million individuals in the United States alone have steatoblepharon.
"Allergan is a leader in medical and facial aesthetics, with unparalleled commercial and development expertise in the medical aesthetics community and a laser-focus on innovation. These characteristics make Allergan ideally suited to continue the successful development and maximize the potential commercialization of XAF5," Dr. Murat Kalayoglu, CEO Topokine and a board-certified ophthalmologist, commented in a statement on the acquisition. "I am deeply appreciative of the commitment and dedication of our Topokine team that has championed the discovery and development of XAF5. We look forward to working with Allergan to ensure continued development success for XAF5 and realize a successful launch of the product."
"Physicians and their patients have been seeking an FDA-approved, non-invasive treatment option to address undereye bags where current treatment options are limited," remarked Dr. Jeffrey Dover, a board-certified dermatologist and director of SkinCare Physicians. "Adding a topical treatment that physicians could offer to their patients would be an important step forward in the treatment of steatoblepharon."
Leerink Partners LLC acted as financial advisor to Topokine for this transaction. Covington & Burling LLP served as legal advisor to Allergan, while Foley Hoag LLP acted as legal counsel for Topokine.
SOURCE: Allergan press release

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