(Credit: Celgene)

Going against industry trend of backing out of the neuroscience field, is Celgene, who is about to put down a potential $2.2 million to gain options on three Prothena drug candidates. 

The deal sees Celgene pay $100 million up front, apace with buying $50 million in Prothena shares that have got milestone payments on the three drugs potentially racking up to a total payment of $2.2 billion.

With Pfizer pulling out of the area and a raft of Alzheimer’s drugs flopping, the neuroscience field has not been blessed with a lot of good news lately. 


Pfizer Calls Off Research into New Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Drugs


Celgene backing the area as a long-term investment is refreshing news, especially in regards to Alzheimer’s research—one of the candidates is a protein that targets tau, a protein implicated in diseases including Alzheimer’s disease.

“Prothena has identified antibodies targeting novel epitopes on the tau protein with the ability to block misfolded tau from binding to cells and to inhibit cell-to-cell transmission, preventing downstream functional toxic effects,” it says in the press release. 

After a number of the other major alternative hypothesis, amyloid-targeting Alzheimer’s treatments failed to show efficacy in trials, this could be of huge interest, writes to Pharmafile.