Aurinia CEO Peter Greenleaf

Af­ter los­ing race for first to mar­ket in lu­pus nephri­tis, Au­rinia taps Ot­su­ka for vo­closporin li­cens­ing pact abroad

Tiny biotech Au­rinia Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cals is look­ing to slay a gi­ant in Glax­o­SmithK­line’s Benlysta — which just scored a big ap­proval in lu­pus nephri­tis — with its late-stage vo­closporin on the cusp of an FDA ap­proval. Look­ing to take its com­mer­cial plans glob­al, Au­rinia has tapped a Japan­ese phar­ma to ac­cel­er­ate its po­ten­tial vo­closporin launch.

Au­rinia will hand over li­cens­ing rights for lu­pus nephri­tis can­di­date vo­closporin in the EU, Japan and else­where to Ot­su­ka Phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal as the late-stage drug rapid­ly ap­proach­es its FDA re­view date, the com­pa­nies said Thurs­day.

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