GlaxoSmithKline signed two new deals to boost its pipeline of products in development while receiving a setback on another drug that was close to launch.

The company agreed to make cash payments and an equity stake in OncoMed Pharmaceuticals, a privately held US company, to be followed by further sums totalling up to $1.4bn (£684m).

The collaboration is based on work on the development of cancer stem cell antibody treatments and gives GSK the option to license up to four monoclonal antibody candidate drugs. OncoMed would receive royalties of more than 9 per cent on any successfully launched.

The deal has been signed through GSK’s centre of excellence for external drug discovery, a programme designed to expand research beyond its own experts and intensify collaboration with biotech researchers from other companies.

The move marks the latest effort by GSK and its pharmaceutical competitors to boost the pipeline of experimental drugs in development, and notably expansion into biological medicines.

The company later this week will hold a research and development day focused on its expanding interest in neurosciences, which follows a presentation last week by AstraZeneca, the Anglo-Swedish group, to unveil details of its new
biologics strategy following the purchase of MedImmune of the US.

Separately, GSK announced a collaboration with Galapagos, the Euronext-quoted company specialising in natural product drug discovery, designed to identify products that could be used as antibacterials and antivirals.

GSK has the option to license products identified by Galapagos for up to six anti-infective targets. It will pay up to €3.5m (£2.5m) in access fees, up to €215m in total cash for a marketed product and royalties that could reach 10 per cent on commercial sales of products successfully developed.

The deal will be co-ordinated through its recently created infectious diseases development arm.

GSK also announced on Monday that US regulators had demanded extra information as a condition for approving an extended release version of Requip, its drug for Parkinson’s Disease, designed to improve on the existing version that causes a number of side effects.

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