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Jan 21, 2009

Panacos Sells Phase II HIV Drug for $7M to Myriad

  • Myriad Pharmaceuticals bought Panacos Pharmaceuticals’ rights and assets related to mid-stage HIV treatment bevirimat for $7 million. Panacos reports that it decided to sell this first-generation maturation inhibitor, which is its only clinical compound, to manage capital resources. In December, the firm nixed over 50% of its employees.

    “We now turn our full attention to our other promising HIV programs and seeking additional financing and partnerships,” says Alan W. Dunton, M.D., Panacos' president and CEO. “We retain a significant intellectual property estate including all of the company’s second- and third-generation maturation inhibitor compounds, the company’s novel oral fusion inhibitor program, and our assays.”

    Myriad gains patents and patent applications related to the compound, product inventory, rights to regulatory filings, and various contracts. Bevirimat has shown to be a potent inhibitor of HIV isolates that are resistant to currently approved drugs. Myriad will take over the Phase IIb clinical studies and will be responsible for further development and regulatory filings.

    Panacos retains 10 U.S. issued patents and its foreign counterparts as well as 12 U.S. patent applications and its foreign counterparts. These cover its second- and third-generation maturation inhibitor program, its oral fusion program, and screening assays. Panacos reports that second-generation maturation inhibitors are entering preclinical testing, the third-generation program is in the lead-optimization phase, and a lead compound from the oral fusion inhibitor program has started preclinical development.

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