BMS in Licensing Deals with Roche, Biogen for $1 Billion-PlusBy
Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMS) has entered into two separate agreements, respectively with Roche and Biogen, to license two of its compounds in deals worth more than $1 billion, collectively. BMS is licensing adnectin, an anti-myostatin compound in development for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), to Roche and an anti-eTau compound under development for treating progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), a brain disorder, to Biogen.
Under the agreement to license adnectin to Roche, Roche will pay BMS an upfront payment of $170 million with potential milestone payments of up to $205 million. Under the Biogen licensing agreement, Biogen will pay BMS an upfront payment of $300 million with potential milestone payments of up to $410 million. Biogen will receive worldwide rights to the anti-eTau compound and will be responsible for the full development and global commercialization of the compound in Alzheimer’s disease and PSP. Biogen will also assume all remaining obligations to the former stockholders of iPierian, a South San Francisco-based privately held biopharmaceutical company through which BMS gained the eTau compound with its 2014 acquisition of iPierian for $175 million and the potential for additional milestone payments totaling $550 million as well as future royalties. Biogen may pay up to the $550 million in remaining milestones plus royalties, including a near term $60 million milestone.
BMS will receive tiered double-digit royalties if either compound is approved and commercialized. These two agreements are subject to clearance under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act, and are expected to close in the second quarter of 2017.
The anti-eTau compound, a monoclonal antibody designed to bind to and decrease levels of extracellular eTau protein, is currently being investigated as a treatment option for PSP, with the potential for future development in other neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease. Adnectin, a fusion protein designed to suppress myostatin, a negative regulator of muscle growth, is currently being investigated as a treatment option for DMD, and has the potential for study in other neuromuscular disorders.