Signing a deal with a large pharma player in the form of Johnson & Johnson for its lead type I diabetes product is not so much the validation that Diamyd Medical needed, but perhaps a logical conclusion and justified reward to the group’s impressive efforts to advance the immunotherapy through the clinic. The company has taken the drug into phase III trials not only single-handedly but with the kind of R&D spend that should make more profligate companies blush. Yesterday, the Stockholm-based company announced that J&J had taken an option to license the product, a novel vaccine for type I diabetes, which also shares its name with the company, resulting in the payment of an upfront fee of $45m and potential milestones of $580m. The news triggered a 28% jump in the group’s share price to SKr139, close to the record high of SKr151.50 achieved in March; the stock has more than tripled in value in the last 12 months.
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