Nabi Biopharmaceuticals triggered an $8 million milestone by completing the transfer of PentaStaph™ know-how to GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Biologicals. Nabi sold the S. aureus vaccine candidate and related technologies to GSK in November 2009 for a total consideration of $46 million, including $26 million associated with accomplishing four milestone tasks.
With this milestone Nabi has earned a total of $21 million in PentaStaph success-based fees. The remaining $5 million stipulated in the agreement will be dispersed upon completion of a Phase I trial that began in December 2009.
"We have made tremendous progress in achieving the PentaStaph milestones by completing three of the four milestone tasks in eight short months following the close of this transaction," says Raafat Fahim, president and CEO of Nabi. “We have one remaining milestone task to complete under this agreement before fully realizing the significant value of the PentaStaph asset sale. We expect to accomplish this final milestone within the next nine months.”
In addition to the milestone fees earned thus far, Nabi received a cash payment of $21.5 million, which included $20 million associated with the transaction close, $1 million linked to the sale of a related preclinical program for a vaccine against S. epidermedis, and $0.5 million as reimbursement for license fees and clinical materials previously manufactured for use in the Phase I trial.
PentaStaph (pentavalent S. aureus vaccine) is Nabi's five-component vaccine candidate against S. aureus infections. Three of the antigen components induce the production of antibodies that target S. aureus polysaccharides. Two additional antigen components induce the production of antibodies that target two of the most virulent toxins produced by the bacteria.This multitarget approach reportedly enhances the immune system's ability to eliminate a broad spectrum of S. aureus strains and neutralizes the bacterial defenses of the most virulent strains.