Sweden’s Biovitrum has announced plans to spin out its small-molecule UK based R&D subsidiary Cambridge Biotechnology (CBT) and a range of primary care projects.

The Stockholm-based firm said that the proposed transaction reflects its previously-announced decision to focus its in-house R&D on specialist pharmaceuticals and protein therapeutics. Biovitrum has hired the services of Nomura Code to help the process move along.

CBT’s R&D pipeline includes one Phase II neuropathic pain project, a Phase II and one Phase I obesity projects as well as “a highly novel leptin mimetic candidate drug”, also in obesity. The portfolio includes one pre-clinical and four pain and inflammation discovery programmes.

Martin Nicklasson, Biovitrum’s chief executive, said that CBT has “a highly competent and successful stand-alone internal R&D organisation based on solid technologies and know-how”. He added that “as we leave small-molecule, primary care drug development, I am convinced that CBT will be successful in the further development of its highly promising pipeline”.

Mr Nicklasson concluded by saying that the spin-off is “a logic step in the execution of our strategic roadmap”.