Sosei Heptares has received a $5m milestone payment from its strategic alliance partner Pfizer after the first subject in a clinical trial was dosed with a new drug candidate from the collaboration between the two companies.

The candidate used in the clinical trial was nominated for advancement by Pfizer back in June 2019, which generated a $3m milestone payment at that time.

During 2019, Pfizer nominated three distinct clinical candidates from the collaboration with Sosei, two of which have now entered into clinical trials.

The collaboration has leveraged Sosei’s StaR technology and Structure-based Drug Design (SBDD) capabilities to design oral small molecules that modulate different G protein-coupled receptor (GPCR) targets across multiple disease areas.

“The start of this new clinical trial is another great example of the productivity of our StaR technology and structure-based drug design approach,” said Rob Cooke, chief technology officer of Sosei.

“It also highlights our ability to work collaboratively and successfully with leading pharma companies, applying cutting-edge complementary capabilities to discover and develop completely new drug candidates with potential to treat major diseases,” he added.

Sosei and Pfizer entered the collaboration back in November 2015, to research and develop potential new medicines directed at up to ten GPCR targets across multiple therapeutic areas. At the time, Pfizer made a $33m equity investment in Sosei as part of the collaboration agreement.