Vifor Pharma to acquire Inositec

Vifor Pharma has announced the acquisition of Inositec AG, a Swiss start-up, developing first-in-class non-dialysis treatments for soft tissue and vascular calcification disorders. Inositec purchase price includes an upfront payment of CHF 20 million and success based clinical earn-out payments.

Inositec’s lead vascular calcification inhibitor, INS-3001, is being developed to treat indications of high unmet medical need and has obtained approval for its phase-I trial, with the first healthy volunteer to be dosed on November 30, 2021. If successful, the plan is to initiate two phase-II programs in 2023, one in non-dialysis CKD patients suffering from PAD, and a separate trial in patients suffering from AVS, a serious condition whereby the aortic valves calcify to the extent that surgical intervention is the only available option.

Vifor Pharma, global pharmaceuticals company headquartered in Switzerland, and listed on the Swiss Stock Exchange, will acquire 100% of the shares in Inositec AG, receiving full global rights for the lead asset INS-3001. Inositec will receive an upfront payment of CHF 20 million and be eligible for success based clinical earn-out payments in the low triple digit million range. Closing of the Inositec transaction is expected to occur still in Q4 2021. Investors in Inositec include ZKB and VI Partners. 

Inositec, a spin-off from ETH Zurich was founded in 2015. Inositec’s novel asset INS-3001, is a once-daily subcutaneous treatment for patients with vascular calcification disorders PAD and AVS, which are both major contributors to cardiovascular morbidity and mortality in affected patient populations. With INS-3001 daily subcutaneous dosing, patients with earlier stages of vascular calcification can be optimally treated, while end-stage kidney disease patients will benefit from the three times per week dosing regimen of SNF472.

Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a progressive vascular calcific disorder particularly common in chronic kidney disease patients and characterized by stenosis of arteries in the lower extremities causing reduced blood flow to the legs. Patients present with recurrent fatigue or pain that is known as intermittent claudication, which causes a poor quality of life. Progressive PAD requires vascular surgery to reduce the risk for limb amputation.

Aortic Valve Stenosis (AVS) is a progressive deterioration of the aortic valve, which can only be treated by implantation of a new valve. AVS occurs when the orifice of the aortic valve is significantly reduced due to calcification. This causes an effective increase in afterload, left ventricular hypertrophy and, eventually, symptoms of congestive heart failure.

(Press release / SK)
Source photo: Vifor Pharma