J&J is adding a $230 million bonus deal to its $30 billion buyout of Actelion.
The pharma giant just snagged commercialization rights on aprocitentan (ACT-132577), which scored promising Phase II data for treatment resistant hypertension. Poised at the launch of a Phase III trial, J&J is handing over $160 million in cash and will follow up with a series of payments with the rest coming in installments over the next three and a half years.
J&J lined up this deal as Idorsia was spun out of Actelion after the pharma giant snagged the Swiss company’s drug portfolio. In addition to the hefty cash commitment for this late-stage drug, J&J also signed off on a deal to pay out royalties ranging from 20% to 35% from sales. And the pharma giant also lands rights to any derivative products that comes out of the hypertension program.
J&J and Idorsia will now share late-stage research costs, adding a new Phase III drug to the Janssen pipeline.
Idorsia reported last May that aprocitentan hit marks for statistical significance in their dose-ranging study. Researchers found that after 8 weeks of therapy the “mean reduction from baseline in diastolic blood pressure – as measured at trough with a novel automated office blood pressure device – was between 6.3 and 12.0 mmHg in a statistically significant dose-dependent manner for the ACT-132577 groups versus a decrease of 4.9 mmHg in the placebo group and a decrease of 8.4 mmHg in the lisinopril group (in the per-protocol population comprised of 410 patients). Systolic blood pressure reductions ranged from 10.3 to 18.5 mmHg in a statistically significant dose-dependent manner in the ACT-132577 groups and were 7.7 and 12.8 mmHg in the placebo and lisinopril groups, respectively.”
Idorsia was launched with a hot stock on the Swiss exchange (SWX: IDIA}, initially priced around the considerable cash it was given. Shares have more than doubled since the spinout occurred.
Martine Clozel, the CSO at Indorsia and the wife of CEO Jean-Paul Clozel, had this to say:
With this decision, Janssen has recognized the potential of aprocitentan, the latest product from a research effort that was initiated nearly 30 years ago and resulted in a broad understanding of the endothelin system and two endothelin receptor antagonists on the market. Aprocitentan can be envisioned to have many other potential applications, in addition to hypertension. This makes the collaboration with Janssen even more meaningful for us.
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