The Netherlands subsidiary of Rhythm Pharmaceuticals, a global commercial-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on transforming the lives of patients and their families living with hyperphagia and severe obesity caused by rare melanocortin-4 receptor (MC4R) pathway diseases, has acquired Xinvento, a Netherlands-based biotech company focused on developing therapies for congenital hyperinsulinism (CHI).
CHI is a rare genetic disease in which cells secrete excess insulin, causing hypoglycemia, which can result in serious health outcomes including seizures, coma, permanent brain damage and death.
Xinvento was founded in 2021 by Claudine van der Sande, an experienced biopharmaceutical leader who previously held positions at Roche and Sanofi, and whose first-hand experience as a caregiver to her son living with CHI inspired her mission to seek a more effective treatment for CHI patients. Ms. van der Sande partnered with Dr. Piet Wigerinck, a medicinal chemist who served as chief scientific officer of Galapagos for 10 years, to lead the scientific effort. Xinvento is developing novel investigational therapeutic candidates designed to improve the care of patients with CHI.
Following the closing of this acquisition, Ms. van der Sande, founder and CEO of Xinvento, will join Rhythm as vice president, head of CHI program, and will provide her deep subject matter expertise to the advancement of the CHI program.
“As a mother and primary caregiver to a child with CHI, Claudine knows that there is significant unmet need for new treatment options that can safely lower the frequency of hypoglycemic events and help minimize the incidence of irreversible brain damage in people born with CHI. In two short years, we believe she has driven a nimble, science-focused organization towards bringing a highly promising therapeutic candidate into the clinic,” said David Meeker, M.D., chair, president and Chief Executive Officer of Rhythm.
“We are excited for the opportunity to expand our pipeline into CHI, a rare disease that is well aligned with our corporate strategy and our focus on rare endocrinology indications. We look forward to entering the clinic with a new therapeutic candidate in 2024.”
“I am confronted daily with the constant challenges and fears of living with CHI and the urgent need for an effective new treatment. I believe Rhythm’s deep clinical development, regulatory and commercial experience in rare diseases makes it the ideal partner to accelerate Xinvento’s CHI program,” said Ms. van der Sande. “I’m thrilled to join the Rhythm team to continue our work to bring a new therapy to patients and families who need improved options to treat this difficult, chronic disease.”
According to the terms of the acquisition agreement, Rhythm will purchase 100 percent of Xinvento’s fully-diluted equity for an upfront payment of $5 million (subject to customary adjustments) with an additional payment of up to $6 million in preclinical development milestones and up to an additional $50 million payable upon certain U.S. or EU regulatory approvals. Rhythm will also pay up to an additional $150 million in certain commercial net sales milestones related to the lead candidate or a second molecule, in the event a second molecule is selected, developed and approved.