Global pharmaceutical company Allergan is reported to have bought San Francisco-based startup Oculeve for $125m (USD) (£80m) earlier this month (26 July). The agreement with Oculeve includes the acquisition of its novel dry eye treatment, OD-01 – a nasal neurostimulation device which increases tear production in patients with dry eye disease.
Allergan’s exisiting portfolio includes dry eye and glaucoma treatments as well as treatments for post-surgical inflammation and conjunctivitis. The acquisition of Oculeve strengthens its dry eye offering, with two pivital trials of OD-01 planned before submission to the US drug regulator for approval.
Allergan’s executive vice president, global brands research and development, David Nicholson, said: “Allergan is committed to developing a broad range of innovations that help patients address dry eye.”
“The OD-01 programme has been shown to provide a strong safety and efficacy profile, and if approved, would provide an exciting new treatment option for patients that is complementary to our existing product offerings in this important treatment area.”
Commenting on the acquisition, president and CEO of Oculeve, Michael Ackermann, said: “Allergan's position and expertise in eye care will maximise the development and potential commercialisation of the OD-01 technology. I am extraordinarily appreciative and proud of the Oculeve team that has worked so hard to develop our exciting technology, and I am thrilled for us to partner with the Allergan team on the continued development, potential approval and availability of OD-01 to patients worldwide.”
Allergan has also bolstered its profile in other therapeutic areas. The pharmaceutical company recently acquired neuropharmaceutical company Naurex for $560m, taking on its portfolio of antidepressant and nervous system drugs.