CU licensee acquired by Alexion Pharma in buyout

By Staff

Taligen Therapeutics, a licensee of the University of Colorado, was acquired recently by Cheshire, Conn.-based Alexion Pharmaceuticals for $111 million and contingent payments. Taligen, headquartered in Cambridge, Mass., has been focused on the discovery and development of novel protein therapeutics.

Taligen's portfolio includes monoclonal antibodies and recombinant fusion proteins that target key factors in the alternative pathway of the complement system, which Taligen's founders – including CU Professor V. Michael Holers, M.D., of the University of Colorado School of Medicine – have validated as an important amplification loop in the inflammation process. Former Taligen CEO Abbie Celniker, Ph.D., will head up Alexion's new Translational Medicine Group, which will accelerate development of Taligen's pre-clinical product candidates.

Taligen was founded in March 2004 and was a recipient of CU's first round of proof-of-concept investments in 2005. In 2008, Taligen received the University of Colorado Technology Transfer Office bioscience company of the year award. The company's most recent funding was a Series B funding round lead by Clarus Ventures, Alta Partners, Sanderling Ventures and Colorado-based High Country Venture.