Prometheus Laboratories is purchasing U.S. rights to three cancer tests from Rosetta Genomics, and the companies will collaborate on the development of other gastroenterology tests. In a separate deal, Prometheus will buy $8 million in Rosetta stock over the next three business days.
The terms of the license agreement provide for payments to Rosetta, either as milestones or R&D, as well as royalty payments on net sales. The miRNA-based tests included in the deal, miRview mets, miRview squamous, and miRview meso, primarily differentiate various lung cancers including mesothelioma and squamous non-small-cell lung cancer, says Prometheus.
Further collaboration is expected in two new gastroenterology tests using miRNA. Development will be funded by Prometheus, and Rosetta may be entitled to milestone and royalty payments.
Under the terms of the stock purchase agreement, Prometheus will also make an equity investment at $4 per ordinary share, representing a 45.45% premium over the closing price of Rosetta stock over three business days.
"Prometheus has established its position as a leader in the gastroenterology market by building an integrated portfolio of diagnostic and pharmaceutical products as well as a highly trained and efficient sales force," says Joseph M. Limber, Prometheus president and CEO. "Leveraging our core strengths, we intend to apply this business model to oncology, where there is an unmet need to guide the use of a growing number of targeted therapies. We believe these three molecular diagnostic tests can help oncologists personalize therapy and are ideally suited to lead our entry into the oncology market, while complementing our emerging internal oncology diagnostics program."