Pfizer and Bain Capital Partner Up to Tackle CNS Disorders

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Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE), in collaboration with Bain Capital, announced the creation of Cerevel Therapeutics, a new biopharmaceutical company focused on developing drug candidates to treat disorders of the central nervous system (CNS).

Pfizer is contributing a portfolio of pre-commercial neuroscience assets to Cerevel, which include three clinical-stage compounds and several pre-clinical compounds designed to target a broad range of CNS disorders, including Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, epilepsy, schizophrenia and addiction.

The funds affiliated with Bain Capital Private Equity and Bain Capital Life Sciences have committed $350 million, with the ability to provide additional capital should it be needed in the future.

The goal is for Cerevel to expand treatment options in a therapeutic area where there is an urgent unmet need for patients. Bain Capital and Pfizer will support Cerevel in building a dedicated team of CNS scientists and life sciences executives with extensive experience in clinical development of potential therapies for patients who have neurological and neuropsychological diseases.

So far, the most advanced assets in the portfolio are a D1 partial agonist, which likely will enter Phase 3 in 2019 to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, and a Phase 2 ready selective GABA 2/3 agonist, which initially will be studied for epilepsy. The company also has active programs in early development, discovery and a research program in neuroinflammation.

Chris Gordon, a managing director at Bain Capital Private Equity, commented:

We are dedicated to developing this promising portfolio of assets thoughtfully, and will provide the right resources to enable Cerevel to build an experienced leadership team that is committed to developing life changing therapies for patients who are struggling with CNS diseases. The broad portfolio we are investing behind consists of several clinical candidates with unique chemistry to enable specific receptor targeting, which has the potential to drive a differentiated clinical profile,” said Adam Koppel, a Managing Director at Bain Capital Life Sciences.

Shares of Pfizer were last seen down about 1% at $43.85, with a consensus analyst price target of $42.94 and a 52-week trading range of $33.20 to $45.81.