- Gilead is working on development of therapies for non-alcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), and as part of that effort, the company recently purchased Phenex's farnesoid X receptor (FXR) agonists, which have therapeutic potential for the treatment of various liver diseases. The cost of the program that Gilead purchased could be worth approximately $470 million.
- NASH is a common disease in which excess fat accumulates in the liver and causes inflammation. The long-term results can include fibrosis, cirrhosis, and liver failure.
- Gilead's acquisition of the FXR platform is intended to expedite its progress in developing effective therapies to address NASH, because FXR is considered a clinically validated target for NASH.
With up to 20% of people in the developing world suffering from NASH, Gilead's foray into the market makes perfect sense, especially considering the company's dominance in the hepatitis C market.
Add to that the fact that there are currently no approved therapies for NASH and it becomes clear that Gilead is aiming to address another unmet medical need that affects a large part of the population.