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ImmuPharma to sell Ureka unit, enters collaboration to develop cancer program

ImmuPharma PLC plans to sell its unit Ureka, following a review by its board of directors.

The London-based drugmaker's board decided Ureka is not part of the company's ongoing strategy to use resources to develop late-stage assets.

Bordeaux, France-based Ureka is developing treatments for type 2 diabetes and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, a buildup of fat in the liver. The therapies have shown success in preclinical studies, ImmuPharma said in a news release.

ImmuPharma will begin the process to sell the unit, but plans to retain an interest in Ureka's future commercial success.

Separately, ImmuPharma entered a collaboration to develop its Nucant cancer program with Incanthera Ltd, an oncology company.

Nucants are chemical structures which help inhibit nucleolin — an interaction that could potentially shrink tumors in cancer patients.

Under the deal, ImmuPharma invested £2 million to subscribe for 363,637 ordinary Incanthera shares, priced at £5.50 each. The purchase gave ImmuPharma a 16% shareholding in the company.

Incanthera will license and oversee development of ImmuPharma's Nucant cancer program. ImmuPharma granted Incanthera a period of exclusivity of until Dec. 31, during which the companies will agree on a license deal regarding Nucant technology.