AC Immune acquires AFFiRiS’ Specific Active Immunotherapy (SAIT) anti-alpha-synuclein programs targeting neurodegenerative diseases

  • AFFiRiS to receive AC Immune stock valued at USD 58.7 million in exchange for its portfolio of therapeutics targeting alpha-synuclein and USD 5 million in cash
  • AFFiRiS to focus on partnering to further develop its SAIT and monoclonal antibody for cardiovascular disease and for Huntington’s disease, respectively

VIENNA, Austria, July 27, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — AFFiRiS AG, a clinical-stage biotechnology company that has been engaged in the development of novel disease-modifying Specific Active Immunotherapies (SAITs), today announced that AC Immune SA (NASDAQ: ACIU), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company pioneering precision medicine for neurodegenerative diseases, is acquiring AFFiRiS’ anti-alpha-synuclein programs targeting neurodegenerative diseases caused by misfolded forms of human self-proteins. All acquired programs are based on AFFiRiS´ AFFITOME® technology.

The all-stock acquisition is valued at USD 58.7 million. Under the terms of the agreement, AC Immune is acquiring all of AFFiRiS´ assets and underlying intellectual property related to active vaccine candidates targeting alpha-synuclein and USD 5 million in cash for 7.1 million shares of AC Immune common stock based on a price of USD 8.26 per common share.

“We are delighted that AC Immune, a company with complementary active immunotherapies, will further advance our industry-leading anti-alpha-synuclein vaccine candidate, developed to slow the progression of disease and help to improve the lives of patients. On the back of our encouraging published data from Phase 1 clinical studies in Parkinson’s disease and multiple system atrophy (MSA), and preclinical proof of principle data in dementia with Lewy bodies (DLB), now was the right time to generate value from these programs through an asset sale,” commented Noel Barrett, PhD, CEO of AFFiRiS AG. “The acquisition of these programs by this pioneer in precision medicine and active vaccination for neurodegenerative diseases validates our AFFITOME® technology platform and the development projects based on it.” He added: “The transaction also allows us to focus on the partnering for further development of AFFiRiS’ other programs in cardiometabolic and neurodegenerative disease indications, such as candidates targeting PCSK9 in hypercholesterolemia and the monoclonal antibody C6-17 to treat Huntington’s disease.”

“As long-term investors in AFFiRiS, we are confident that AFFiRiS’ active immunotherapy program will favourably contribute to AC Immune’s portfolio of transformative medicines by delivering much needed patient-friendly, highly innovative disease-modifying therapies to patients suffering from neurodegenerative diseases,” added Michael Motschmann, Chairman of AFFiRiS’ Supervisory Board and General Partner of MIG AG, one of the founding investors of AFFiRiS.

The acquisition is subject to customary regulatory approval in Austria and expected to complete at the beginning of Q4 2021.

About AFFiRiS AG:

AFFiRiS is a clinical-stage biotechnology company located in Vienna, Austria, with a vision of using the immune system to identify and target human proteins central to the development and progression of neurodegenerative and cardiometabolic diseases, based on its proprietary patented AFFITOME® technology. The Company’s ultimate goal is to improve the lives of patients suffering from these diseases by providing specific immunotherapies.

Following the sale of its SAIT anti-alpha-synuclein programs to AC Immune in an all-stock transaction, AFFiRiS will concentrate on partnering activities to facilitate the further development of its programs in cardiovascular and neurodegenerative disease indications. AFFiRiS published positive Phase 1 clinical results with active immunotherapies targeting PCSK9 to treat the cardiovascular condition hypercholesterolemia. In addition, AFFiRiS will focus on partnering activities to enable the further development of the monoclonal antibody mAB C6-17 targeting mutated huntingtin (mtHTT) protein, which causes Huntington’s disease. This is a neurodegenerative, hereditary disease characterized by changes in personality, cognitive impairment and loss of motor function, leading to death over a period of 10 to 30 years.

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Contact AFFiRiS AG: Media contact:
Dr. Cornelia Kutzer MC Services
Communication and Business Development Julia Hofmann
E P +49 89 210228 0

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