US-based biotech company Ironwood Pharmaceuticals has revealed plans to split into two independent, publicly traded companies, Ironwood and R&D.
After the division, Ironwood is set to use the company’s existing commercial footprint to bolster its in-market products and drive development programmes for gastrointestinal diseases, uncontrolled gout and abdominal pain therapies.
R&D will build on the work in cyclic guanosine monophosphate (cGMP) pharmacology to develop a new sGC pipeline, including praliciguat and olinciguat (IW-1701), for serious and orphan diseases.
Ironwood Pharmaceuticals board of directors chairman Terrance McGuire said: “There has never been a more exciting time for Ironwood, and our decision to separate these businesses underscores the strength of our in-market and development portfolio developed by the team’s leadership and expertise.
“This particular strategic review, which began in the fall of 2017, included a focus on opportunities to best develop Ironwood’s strong commercial platform and its rich drug discovery and development assets.”
The company expects the division to create more productive businesses with separate management teams to focus on strategic priorities, target markets and development opportunities.
Ironwood’s assets will be made up of in-market products, linaclotide and lesinurad, and development candidates IW-3718 and linaclotide delayed release.
R&D’s sGC stimulator portfolio will include praliciguat, olinciguat, IW-6463 and other programmes targeting severe liver and lung diseases.
This new company intends to out-license drugs targeting larger patient populations.
Subject to customary conditions, the separation is expected to be completed in the first half of next year.