Anji Pharma and Population Health Partners Enter into Strategic Collaboration to Jointly Fight High Prevalence Human Diseases
BOSTON AND NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Anji Pharmaceuticals and Population Health Partners today announced that they have entered into a strategic collaboration, bringing together two complementary teams to jointly address high-prevalence human diseases.
Anji Pharmaceuticals (“Anji”) is an emerging global pharmaceutical company founded by CEO Dr. Brian Hubbard, who has led therapeutic discovery and development programs at MIT’s Broad Institute and at Harvard, Merck, Novartis and Millennium Pharmaceuticals. Anji’s co-founders also include chief marketing officer, Dr. Dan Meyers, who designed and led over 40 clinical trials; CSO Dr. Mike Serrano-Wu, who was part of the discovery teams that identified daclatasvir, pradigastat and 5 additional molecules that reached clinical trials; and COO Dr. Yiwei Zong, an experienced investor and entrepreneur. Anji is advancing high-potential late-stage clinical assets into Phase II and Phase III development.
Population Health Partners (“PHP”) is a global life sciences investment firm founded by Dr. Clive Meanwell, who led therapeutic development programs in his roles as Founder and CEO of The Medicines Company, and across a range of management positions at Roche. Other PHP partners include Ian Read, former chairman and CEO of Pfizer; Dr. Roy Berggren, former head of McKinsey’s global life sciences practice; and Chris Cox, former head of the global corporate law practice of Cadwalader Wickersham and Taft.
PHP will work with Anji to support their portfolio and advise on strategic and operational matters as they advance clinical assets that have strong potential to improve the lives and reduce health burdens of millions of people with prevalent diseases. and/or disease risk factors.
“We built Anji to be an agile, asset-centric biopharmaceutical company that can repeatedly unlock value from clinical programs where we see high validation and unmet need,” said Brian Hubbard, Ph.D. ., co-founder and CEO of Anji. “Teaming up with PHP is clearly one of those ‘1+1=3’ moments, where everyone’s deep skill set will allow Anji to deliver life-changing medicines to patients even faster.”
The initial objective of the Anji/PHP collaboration is to accelerate the development of the two main clinical assets in Anji’s pipeline. ANJ900 (metformin delayed-release) is an investigational agent currently in phase 3 trials to enable the safe use of metformin in type 2 diabetic patients with advanced chronic kidney disease (CKD). Previous trials with ANJ900 demonstrated clinically significant blood glucose lowering with only one-third of the plasma concentrations seen with currently marketed metformin formulations. This finding indicates the potential for expanded and improved treatment for patients with CKD in whom the use of metformin is currently contraindicated.
ANJ908 (pradigastat) is a novel DGAT1 inhibitor that has successfully completed a Phase 2 study in patients with chronic idiopathic constipation (NCT04620161). This proof-of-concept study was performed at 25 clinical trial sites in the United States and China and demonstrated the potential efficacy, safety, and dose range of pradigastat in patients who met the Rome criteria IV for constipation. Chronic idiopathic constipation affects nearly one in seven Americans, with nearly two million patients seeking drug therapy options worldwide. Anji plans to share preliminary results of the study later this year.
“Anji has an extraordinary team – and a proven and inspiring leader in Brian. Their ability to unpack the complexities of biology, chemistry, pharmacology and clinical performance so they can recognize high potential value and running effective drug development programs is very impressive,” said Clive Meanwell, MD, President and Managing Partner of PHP. “We will leverage PHP’s knowledge and experience to help Anji create value and produce a positive impact on prevalent diseases.
Locust Walk serves as an advisor to Anji and will work together with Anji and PHP to advance the goals of the strategic collaboration.
About Anji Pharma
Anji Pharma is a clinical-stage company dedicated to bringing life-changing therapies to patients around the world. Anji’s asset-centric business model enables rapid and flexible value creation, leveraging a clinical and regulatory core that operates with “spoke” efficiency. Anji has R&D expertise in Boston, Shanghai and Berlin, and is preparing additional programs. for early clinical development.
For more information, visit www.anjipharma.com.
About Population Health Partners, LP
Population Health Partners, LP is a private equity firm committed to building great companies around important late-stage therapeutics and solving the health and economic challenges posed by prevalent diseases. While at The Medicines Company, Population Health Partners executives achieved eight drug approvals involving 21 clinical trials and 91,000 randomized patients and were ranked #1 in the CNBC RQ 50 for biopharmaceutical R&D productivity.
For more information, visit www.populationhp.com.