PHARMACY

Three Rivers to buy Valeant’s Infergen in possible $90 million-plus deal

BY Drew Buono

ALISO VIEJO, Calif. and CRANBERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa. Valeant Pharmaceuticals has agreed to sell its U.S. and Canadian rights to its hepatitis C drug Infergen to Three Rivers Pharmaceuticals, in a deal worth that can potentially be worth more than $90 million, according to published reports.

Valeant, which makes products for dermatology, infectious diseases and neurology, said on closing it will receive about $70.8 million in cash and up to $20.5 million in two non- contingent payments over the following 18 months from Three Rivers.

“This acquisition further promotes Three Rivers’ continuous strategy to expand its product offerings through product acquisition and internal product development in highly specialized therapeutic disease categories like hepatitis C,” Donald Kerrish, Three Rivers’ president and chief executive officer, said in a statement.

As part of the deal, Three Rivers will acquire the remaining inventory of the drug from Valeant. The transaction is expected to close during the first quarter of 2008. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 3.9 million Americans (1.8 percent) have been infected with the hepatitis C virus.

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PHARMACY

BioSante makes milestone payment of $875,000 to Antrares for Elestrin

BY Drew Buono

EWING, N.J. Antares Pharma has received an additional payment of $875,000 from BioSante Pharmaceuticals in relation to a marketing agreement with Bradley Pharmaceuticals for the drug Elestrin.

Elestrin is a low dose transdermal estradiol therapy that is used for the treatment of hot flashes in menopausal women. Antares allowed BioSante to use its advanced transdermal delivery gel system for the drug. Additional sales based milestone payments could bring the deals total value to more than $13 million, not including royalties based on third party sales.

“We look forward to continued marketing progress with Elestrin in 2008. The December 2006 FDA approval of this product has validated our ATD gel system and that has been a significant milestone for Antares and our potential pipeline products including Anturol—our proprietary ATD gel based overactive bladder product—currently in pivotal trials,” said Jack Stover, president and chief executive officer of Antares Pharma.

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GSK, Santaris ink deal worth a potential $700 million

BY Drew Buono

LONDON GlaxoSmithKline has signed a deal with the biotech company Santaris Pharma to develop new antiviral medicine, in a deal that could be worth more than $700 million, according to Reuters. The deal involves drug candidates discovered and developed under the agreement in up to four different viral disease programs.

As part of the deal, Santaris will receive an upfront payment of $3 million for the first antiviral program and an equity investment of $5 million. The deal could be worth more than $700 million based on upfront payments and development and regulatory milestone payments, depending on the success on early-stage research in RNA antagonist compounds.

Santaris will also get high single- to double-digit percentage royalties on worldwide sales of marketed products. GSK will have the option to develop drug candidates in up to four different viral disease programs. It also has an option to include as an additional program Santaris’ pre-clinical hepatitis C compound SPC3649.

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