Synta Pharmaceuticals achieved an operational milestone triggering a $10 million payment from GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) under its collaboration for elesclomol. The drug is currently being studied in combination with paclitaxel in a Phase III trial in metastatic melanoma.
In October 2007, Synta and GSK inked a deal covering elesclomol that was worth $965 million. Synta has earned a total of $130 million to date, including $80 million up front and $25 million for milestones achieved in October and $15 million for milestones achieved in December 2008.
The company is eligible for a total of $585 million in precommercial milestone payments: $150 related to development in melanoma and the remainder related to other cancer indications. Synta is also eligible to $300 million in sales milestones, 40-50% share of operating profits in the U.S., and double-digit royalties on ex-U.S. sales.
Elesclomol is an investigational first-in-class oxidative stress inducer that triggers apoptosis in cancer cells. Enrollment for the Phase III study was completed earlier this month.
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