LogicBio Therapeutics a Massachusetts-based, clinical-stage genomic medicine company, announced on Monday that the company is being acquired by Alexion, AstraZeneca Rare Disease.
Under the terms of the agreement, Alexion, through a subsidiary, will initiate a cash tender offer to acquire all outstanding shares of LogicBio for $2.07 per share. This includes its gene editing technology platforms, R&D team, and expertise in preclinical development to support Alexion’s growth in genomic medicines.
LogicBio has two technology platforms designed to deliver gene therapy to address genetic diseases including rare diseases. The sAAVy platform is focused on adeno-associated virus (AAV) capsid technologies to optimize the delivery of genetic treatments in a broad range of indications and tissues. The GeneRide platform harnesses homologous recombination for precise gene integration. LogicBio also offers its manufacturing process, mAAVRx, aimed at improving yields and product quality in the development of AAV-based therapies.
LogicBio spun out from the lab of Mark Kay, MD, PhD, professor of genetics at Stanford University and an AAV vector veteran, in 2014.
LogicBio focuses on the development of gene therapy solutions for pediatric patients with rare diseases. The first drug in the company’s pipeline (LB-001) is for methylmalonic acidemia (MMA), a life-threatening condition affecting approximately one in 50,000 newborns in the United States.
In October 2021, LogicBio announced clinical trial results demonstrating the first-ever use of nuclease-free genome editing technology in children. Early data from the Phase I/II trial looked promising. But on February 2, 2022, the company hosted a conference call to reveal that the FDA had placed the MMA trial on clinical hold. At that time, four patients had been dosed. The first two patients, the older patients, were fine. But the third and fourth patients experienced thrombotic microangiopathy (TMA), an adverse event previously reported in other AAV gene therapies. In May, the company was told by FDA that they could continue the trial and resume dosing.
“We are excited about the opportunity to bring our science and expertise in genetic medicine to Alexion, which shares our commitment to discovering treatments for rare conditions and improving the lives of patients,” notes Fred Chereau, president and chief executive officer of LogicBio. “Through this acquisition, we strive to accelerate our research in gene editing and AAV capsid development and together move the field of genomic medicine forward.”
Alexion plans to close the deal in four to six weeks, subject to the tender of at least a majority of the outstanding shares of LogicBio common stock and satisfaction of other closing conditions. Alexion plans to retain LogicBio employees at their current location.
“The proposed acquisition of LogicBio is a significant development for our growing research in genomic medicine,” said Marc Dunoyer, chief executive officer, Alexion, AstraZeneca Rare Disease. “LogicBio’s people, experience and platforms provide new scientific capabilities by adding best-in-class technology and expertise to our genomic medicine strategy. The scientific collaboration between Alexion and AstraZeneca has been a substantial area of focus since last year’s acquisition and the addition of LogicBio will expand this foundational work.”