Transaction gives Merck worldwide rights excluding Japan.

Merck & Co. licensed Japan Tobacco’s osteoporosis treatment, in Phase I and II trails, on a worldwide basis excluding Japan.

JT will receive an upfront payment and is eligible to earn additional cash payments based on development and approval milestones as well as royalties.

JTT-305, an oral calcium sensing receptor antagonist, is in Phase II trials in Japan for its effect on increasing bone density. It is also in Phase I studies outside of Japan. Most current available osteoporosis therapies reduce fracture risk by slowing bone loss or bone resorption. Osteoanabolic drugs, such as JTT-305, may reduce fracture risk by stimulating the growth of new bone and thereby increasing bone density, according to the companies.

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