Ophthotech achieved a $50 million enrollment milestone payment from Novartis Pharma as part of an ex-U.S. licensing and commercialization agreement focused on the treatment of wet age-related macular degeneration (AMD) in a Fovista® Phase III clinical program. This is the first of a total of $130 million in potential enrollment-based milestones as part of the agreement.
In May, Ophthotech granted Novartis exclusive rights to commercialize Fovista in markets outside the U.S., with Ophthotech retaining sole rights to commercialize Fovista in the U.S. Under the deal, potential payments to Ophthotech could total over $1 billion in upfront and milestone payments, not including future royalties on ex-U.S. Fovista sales, according to the company. Ophthotech received an upfront payment of $200 million. It is eligible to receive contingent future ex-U.S. marketing approval milestones totaling up to $300 million and ex-U.S. sales milestones up to $400 million. In addition, Ophthotech is entitled to receive royalties on ex-U.S. Fovista sales.
Fovista, an antiplatelet-derived growth factor compound, is being studied in combination with antivascular endothelial growth factor therapy for the treatment of wet AMD.The Fovista Phase III program consists of three clinical trials to evaluate the safety and efficacy of the compound. The company expects to enroll up to 1,866 patients in the three trials in more than 225 centers worldwide and to have initial, topline data available in 2016.