Identification of three lead candidates triggered $3 million payment in billion-dollar deal.

Epix Pharmaceuticals received $3 million for its identification of three candidates to move forward into lead optimization in the GPCR discovery alliance with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). This marks the second of three discovery programs embarked upon under the collaboration inked in December 2006.

As part of the agreement, GSK initially paid $35 million including $17.5 million through the purchase of its common stock. Epix received its first $3 million milestone payment in August and stands to make up to $1.194 billion in future achievement-based fees. The company is also entitled to receive tiered double-digit royalties on sales by GSK of all collaboration-developed products.

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