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Jul 9, 2013

Pact Builds Amgen Cardiovascular Drug Presence, Could Net Servier $50M+

  • Amgen said today it obtained from Servier U.S. commercial rights to an oral cardiovascular treatment marketed in the European Union, as well as an exclusive U.S. option to develop and commercialize the seller’s investigational molecule S38844 for CV diseases, in a three-product deal that builds a heart drug presence for Amgen and could potentially net Servier more than $50 million.

    As part of the deal, Servier gains European commercialization rights to omecamtiv mecarbil, an activator of cardiac myosin now in Phase II studies for potential heart failure applications in patients with systolic dysfunction. Omecamtiv mecarbil is being developed through an Amgen collaboration with Cytokinetics.

    Amgen said it will make a one-time $50 million up-front payment and future milestone and royalty payments for the E.U.-approved Procoralan® (ivabradine), for chronic heart failure and stable angina in patients with elevated heart rates.
    Financial terms associated with Amgen's option for S38844 and Servier's option for omecamtiv mecarbil were not disclosed. Both companies did say, however, they can exercise their respective options for the investigational therapies up to completion of some Phase II studies.

    "A critical unmet medical need remains for patients who don't respond adequately to current available therapies for heart failure and angina. Ivabradine, an If inhibitor, offers a novel alternative approach for patients with elevated heart rates,” Sean E. Harper, M.D., Amgen’s evp of research and development, said in a statement.

    Ivabradine was approved in the E.U. in 2005 for symptomatic treatment of stable angina, and won additional approval last year for chronic heart failure. Ivabradine is approved in more than 100 other countries, though not the U.S.

    Added Servier CEO Jean-Philippe Seta, M.D., in the statement: “This is a clear recognition of the medical value of ivabradine, one of our major cardiovascular innovations, which could also benefit U.S. patients.”

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