Thursday - January 9, 2020

Bayer and Evotec form new strategic alliance focusing on polycystic ovary syndrome

New five-year, multi-target alliance aims to translate first-in-class science and drug discovery into new drugs for polycystic ovary syndrome / Partners will have access to big data-driven target identification as highly promising approach via Evotec’s alliance with Celmatix Inc. / Milestone payments potentially more than EUR 330 million and EUR 16.5 million upfront and research payments

Hamburg and Berlin, Germany, January 9, 2020 – Evotec SE (Frankfurt Stock Exchange: EVT, MDAX/TecDAX, ISIN: DE0005664809) and Bayer AG today announced the expansion of their partnership in women’s health indications with a new five-year, multi-target collaboration to develop multiple clinical candidates for the treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).

Under the terms of the agreement, both companies will contribute drug targets and a comprehensive set of high-quality technology platforms to jointly develop innovative treatment options. The strategic alliance will also have access to targets from the recently formed partnership between Celmatix Inc. and Evotec. Celmatix is the world leader in big data-driven target discovery focused on fertility and women’s health.

“Polycystic ovary syndrome is a common, underdiagnosed and undertreated disease among women, with several serious co-morbidities. The currently available treatment options are also limited and insufficient,” said Dr. Cord Dohrmann, Chief Scientific Officer of Evotec. “Our long-term partnership with Bayer and the progression of multiple clinical candidates has been very successful and we look forward to continuing the relationship to deliver novel therapies for the benefit of patients with PCOS.”

“There is a high unmet medical need for women worldwide suffering from polycystic ovary syndrome. This new research alliance will perfectly complement Bayer's research activities in the area of women’s health,” said Dr. Joerg Moeller, Member of the Executive Committee of Bayer AG’s Pharmaceuticals Division and Head of Research and Development. “We look forward to joining our forces with Evotec in PCOS to develop new treatment options for women living with this often devastating condition.”

Bayer and Evotec will share responsibilities during the pre-clinical development of potential clinical candidates. Bayer will be responsible for any subsequent clinical development and commercialization. Evotec will receive EUR 6.5 million upfront payment and EUR 10 million research payments over five years. In addition, Evotec might be eligible to receive pre-clinical, clinical and sales milestones of potentially over EUR 330 million as well as royalties up to low double-digit percentage of net sales.

In 2012, Bayer and Evotec entered their first strategic five-year, multi-target alliance. The collaboration was successfully completed resulting in three clinical and one pre-clinical drug candidate currently advancing through development for the treatment of endometriosis. A second research alliance was initiated in 2016 to develop multiple clinical candidates for the treatment of kidney diseases.

About polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
PCOS is the most frequent endocrine disorder in women linked to metabolic dysfunction and the most frequent cause of female infertility. 83 percent of infertility or pregnancy complications may be caused by PCOS. It is estimated that PCOS occurs in 5-10 percent of women. PCOS has a high unmet medical need due to limited treatment options. PCOS is characterised by high levels of androgens (male hormones such as testosterone) produced in the ovaries, adrenals and fat tissue leading to the typical skin signs of androgen access such as hair loss and acne. Ovarian cysts give the syndrome its name and are associated with irregular menstrual cycle and the above described infertility. 80 percent of PCOS patients suffer from obesity and more than half are afflicted with insulin resistance, both driven by this endocrinological disorder. While the underlying cause of PCOS is largely unknown, genomic studies underpin a strong genetic background.

About the Evotec-Celmatix partnership in women’s health
In October 2019, Evotec and Celmatix, a precision medicine company with a proprietary multi-omics platform, announced a partnership to develop pre-clinical programmes in prevalent but underserved conditions affecting women’s reproductive health, including PCOS, endometriosis, and infertility. In this research collaboration, Evotec is responsible for medicinal chemistry, in vitro and in vivo pharmacology, in addition to its broad development capabilities and expertise, while Celmatix contributes novel drug target discovery, powered by its proprietary multi-omics Reproductive Atlas™ platform. The partnership was expanded in December 2019 with Evotec participating in a funding round.

About Evotec SE
Evotec is a drug discovery alliance and development partnership company focused on rapidly progressing innovative product approaches with leading pharmaceutical and biotechnology companies, academics, patient advocacy groups and venture capitalists. Evotec operates worldwide and more than 2,900 employees provide the highest quality stand-alone and integrated drug discovery and development solutions. Evotec covers all activities from target-to-clinic to meet the industry’s need for innovation and efficiency in drug discovery and development (EVT Execute). The Company has established a unique position by assembling top-class scientific experts and integrating state-of-the-art technologies as well as substantial experience and expertise in key therapeutic areas including neuronal diseases, diabetes and complications of diabetes, pain and inflammation, oncology, infectious diseases, respiratory diseases and fibrosis, rare diseases and women’s health. On this basis, Evotec has built a broad and deep pipeline of approx. 100 co-owned product opportunities at clinical, pre-clinical and discovery stages (EVT Innovate). Evotec has established multiple long-term alliances with partners including Bayer, Boehringer Ingelheim, Bristol-Myers Squibb, CHDI, Novartis, Novo Nordisk, Pfizer, Sanofi, Takeda, UCB and others. For additional information please go to and follow us on Twitter @Evotec.

About Bayer
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the life science fields of health care and nutrition. Its products and services are designed to benefit people by supporting efforts to overcome the major challenges presented by a growing and aging global population. At the same time, the Group aims to increase its earning power and create value through innovation and growth. Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development, and the Bayer brand stands for trust, reliability and quality throughout the world. In fiscal 2018, the Group employed around 117,000 people and had sales of 39.6 billion euros. Capital expenditures amounted to 2.6 billion euros, R&D expenses to 5.2 billion euros. For more information, go to

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Forward-Looking Statements
This release may contain forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in Bayer’s public reports which are available on the Bayer website at The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.

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Sarah-Christine Wanner

External Innovation and Partnering
Phone +49 30 468-193178