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With M&A Deal, Click Therapeutics’ Digital Prospects in Metabolic Disease Get Better

Click Therapeutics is acquiring the assets of Better Therapeutics two months after that digital therapeutics developer announced it would lay off all employees and shut down. Better’s main asset is AspyreRx, an FDA-authorized mobile app for type 2 diabetes.

Digital therapeutics developer Click Therapeutics is building up its prospects in cardiometabolic disorders by acquiring the assets of Better Therapeutics, a company whose technology platform yielded one FDA-authorized product and could serve as a springboard for a range of drug and digital treatment pairings.

Better’s FDA-authorized prescription digital therapeutic, named AspyreRx, is a type 2 diabetes mobile app that helps patients modify behaviors in order to change the course of their disease. Artificial intelligence enables the software to personalize treatment plans to each patient. AspyreRx secured FDA authorization last summer, but Better struggled to commercialize the product on its own. Payer coverage decisions on the app were pending as Better’s capital reserves ran dry.

In March, Better announced it would lay off all employees and explore strategic alternatives. The acquisition by New York-based Click announced last week gives the Better assets a new opportunity in the hands of a company that has found success so far with a hybrid business model. Click develops and commercializes some programs on its own but it also collaborates with big pharmaceutical companies on others. Click’s first commercialized asset was the smoking-cessation program Clickotine. Its internal pipeline includes a migraine digital therapeutic in late-stage clinical development.

Click’s most recent regulatory win was the FDA clearance in April for Rejoyn, a major depressive disorder digital therapeutic developed in partnership with Otsuka Pharmaceutical. A separate partnership with Boehringer Ingelheim has reached late-stage clinical development in schizophrenia. Last year, Click and Indivior began a collaboration on a digital treatment for substance use disorder.

Click was already pursuing metabolic disorders before it acquired the Better assets. Its pipeline includes CT-181, a digital therapeutic in development for obesity. Similar to some of its other programs, the company does not aim to replace drug therapy. Rather, Click intends for its products to be used alongside medications. In cardiometabolic disease, the company’s research includes ways to use technology to adjust the dose of a drug and manage side effects. Using digital therapy alongside pharmacotherapy could improve clinical outcomes compared to drug therapy alone, the company says.

Besides AspyreRx, the Better assets coming to Click include other cardiometabolic programs in earlier stages of development. BT-004 is a potential digital treatment for the chronic liver disease metabolic dysfunction-associated steatohepatitis (MASH). BT-002 was in development for reducing blood pressure in patients with hypertension while BT-003 is a potential therapy for lowering LDL cholesterol in patients with hyperlipidemia. Better had shelved all three programs as it focused its resources on AspyreRx.

Financial terms of the Better asset acquisition were not disclosed. Click says it plans to integrate the Better assets with its own technology to develop a digital therapeutic optimized for treating obesity in combination with metabolic disorder medications, including GLP-1 agonist drugs such as Novo Nordisk’s Ozempic and Wegovy as well as Mounjaro and Zepbound from Eli Lilly. Click said the integration of Better’s assets into its own platform also presents additional development opportunities in type 2 diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, and MASH.

“We expect the resulting best-of-both program will earn the long-term loyalty of patients, enabling superior outcomes and the generation of valuable real-world data insights for providers and payers,” Click Chief Technology Officer Han Chiu said in a prepared statement.

Photo: LDProd, Getty Images