Sandoz signs deal for antifungal from Astellas in buff-up of anti-infectives portfolio
Generics giant and Novartis division Sandoz signed a deal with Astellas for worldwide rights to the antifungal drug micafungin sodium, also known as Mycamine.
Sandoz and Astellas put out word Tuesday that the deal has been signed, with a tentative closing date sometime in the first half of the year. Astellas said in a statement that Sandoz is paying between $62.5 million and $75 million upfront — dependent on when the deal actually closes — with potential for milestone payments based on sales.
Astellas said in a statement that the agreement is part of its efforts to optimize where resources are allocated and “achieve sustainable growth.” The company also said that the drug, also approved in Japan as Funguard, made $135 million in the 12 months ending on March 31, 2022.
Mycamine is an echinocandin, one of three lead classes of antifungal agents, and was FDA-approved in 2005 before the merger that created Astellas. It is currently indicated for both invasive candidiasis and esophageal candidiasis, on top of preventing candida and aspergillus infections in patients going through hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.
A Sandoz spokesperson told Endpoints News that while the division could not disclose “details of transaction-related discussions,” Sandoz did a strategic evaluation for a “transaction of this nature.” The deal structure also factored in expected future trends as well as Sandoz’s expectations regarding the timing for generic entry into individual markets.
“Our strategy in this field is to capitalize further on our global leadership in generic antibiotics, building out our leading position in penicillins with a strong position in cephalosporins, the largest market segment by global sales as well as other relevant anti-infectives, particularly in the hospital segment. The planned acquisition of Mycamine represents a significant step forward in this respect,” the spokesperson added.