Takeda Pharmaceutical will partner with Prosetta Biosciences on a feasibility study for possible future co-development of Prosetta’s novel compounds for central nervous system diseases and disorders.

The collaboration, whose value was not disclosed, comes some 5 months after Takeda joined with other investors to raise $31 million in financing for Prosetta through a private placement.

Takeda and Prosetta have committed to performing jointly an initial, agreed-upon research plan related to an undisclosed target of interest under their Feasibility and First Right of Negotiation Agreement.

The agreement gives Takeda exclusive rights to negotiate a separate comprehensive collaboration and license option agreement through which the companies would carry out further R&D related to the target.

Takeda has agreed to pay Prosetta an upfront payment as well as additional payments tied to achieving precommercialization and commercialization milestones. Takeda also agreed to pay Prosetta royalty payments on any marketed products under the collaboration and license option agreement.

Founded 2002 and based in San Francisco, Prosetta focuses on developing novel small-molecule antiviral therapeutics using a drug discovery platform based on its cell-free protein synthesizing systems (CFPSS), developed by researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, and the University of Washington.

Prosetta has applied its platform to identify small molecules designed to disrupt or alter key protein–protein interactions involved with the assembly of viral capsids. The company says its antiviral compounds have shown activity against influenza, human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), and hepatitis C virus (HCV).

In December, Prosetta raised approximately $31 million in gross proceeds through a Series D private placement whose investors included Takeda as well as Fred Alger Management, an asset management firm with approximately $22.8 billion in assets under management as of last year.

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