EQT Life Sciences

EQT Life Sciences announces strategic alliance of its portfolio company iSTAR Medical with AbbVie

Alliance will provide opportunity for AbbVie to further expand its diverse eye care portfolio and provide additional treatment options for glaucoma patients.

Collaboration further supports the role of MINIject® in the treatment of glaucoma and accelerates goal to bring MINIject to more patients globally.

Deal terms include a $60M upfront payment to iSTAR Medical.

iSTAR Medical to continue development and commercialization of the MINIject device up to completion of the U.S. PMA study.

EQT Life Sciences today announced that AbbVie (NYSE: ABBV) and iSTAR Medical SA have entered into a strategic transaction to further develop and commercialize iSTAR Medical’s MINIject® device, a next-generation minimally invasive glaucoma surgical (MIGS) device for patients with glaucoma. This complementary alliance will support iSTAR Medical’s development and commercial efforts for MINIject®, as well as provide an opportunity to expand AbbVie’s eye care business, building on its glaucoma portfolio which includes drops, sustained release implants, and stent offerings. iSTAR Medical is a portfolio company of the LSP Health Economics Fund 2 managed by the EQT Life Sciences team.

MINIject® received Conformité Européenne (CE) marking approval to commercialize in European countries in the last quarter of 2021 and launched commercially in select European countries in early 2022. iSTAR Medical is currently enrolling a U.S. Pre-Market Approval study (STAR-V) to enable commercialization in the U.S.

"As a leading company in eye care with a commitment to a broad and diverse portfolio from the front to the back of the eye, along with our global footprint and infrastructure in glaucoma, we are well-positioned to support bringing this MIGS offering to patients and glaucoma specialists through this strategic alliance," said Michael Robinson, M.D, Vice President, Global Therapeutic Area Head of Eye Care, AbbVie. "This alliance with iSTAR Medical is an important step as we continue to be an innovator in glaucoma by maximizing the value of interventional approaches throughout the treatment paradigm."

“Today’s announcement is validation of the transformational role of MINIject in the treatment of glaucoma,” said Michel Vanbrabant, Chief Executive Officer, iSTAR Medical. “Our commitment has always been to enable more glaucoma patients globally to be treated effectively in a minimally-invasive manner with our MINIject® MIGS device, and this alliance accelerates that goal, especially in the United States. We will benefit from AbbVie’s strong global experience and knowledge base already established in glaucoma, and we are excited to be working with such a world class team.”

Under the terms of the agreement, iSTAR Medical will receive a $60M non-dilutive upfront payment and will continue to develop and commercialize MINIject® until completion of the STAR-V clinical study. AbbVie will hold the exclusive right to acquire iSTAR Medical and lead subsequent global development and commercialization of the MINIject device. If AbbVie exercises the right to acquire iSTAR, the stockholders of iSTAR Medical would also be eligible to receive additional contingent payments of up to $475M in a closing payment and upon achievement of certain predetermined milestones.

iSTAR Medical will remain an independent company through the completion of the STAR-V study. This financing will support the continued development and commercialization of MINIject®, including ongoing clinical studies and further enhancements to the technology. SVB Securities LLC acted as financial advisor to iSTAR Medical.

Forward-Looking Statements

Some statements in this news release are, or may be considered, forward-looking statements for purposes of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “project” and similar expressions, among others, generally identify forward-looking statements. AbbVie cautions that these forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those indicated in the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, failure to realize the expected benefits from AbbVie’s acquisition of Allergan plc (“Allergan”), failure to promptly and effectively integrate Allergan’s businesses, competition from other products, challenges to intellectual property, difficulties inherent in the research and development process, adverse litigation or government action, changes to laws and regulations applicable to our industry and the impact of public health outbreaks, epidemics or pandemics, such as COVID-19. Additional information about the economic, competitive, governmental, technological and other factors that may affect AbbVie's operations is set forth in Item 1A, “Risk Factors,” of AbbVie's 2021 Annual Report on Form 10-K, which has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, as updated by its subsequent Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q. AbbVie undertakes no obligation to release publicly any revisions to forward-looking statements as a result of subsequent events or developments, except as required by law. 

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EQT Press Office, press@eqtpartners.com, +46 8 506 55 334

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