WHITEHOUSE STATION N.J., PRINCETON, N.J. and JAMAICA PLAIN, Mass., April 21, 2009 Merck & Co., Inc., (through an affiliate), Medarex, Inc. (NASDAQ: MEDX) and Massachusetts Biologic Laboratories (MBL) of the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMMS) today announced that they have signed an exclusive worldwide license agreement for CDA-1 and CDB-1 (also known as MDX-066/MDX-1388 and MBL-CDA1/MBL-CDB1), an investigational fully human monoclonal antibody combination developed to target and neutralize Clostridium difficile toxins A and B, for the treatment of C. difficile infection (CDI). CDA-1 and CDB-1 were co-developed by Medarex and MBL.
Under the terms of the agreement, Merck gains worldwide rights to develop and commercialize CDA-1 and CDB-1. Medarex and MBL will receive an upfront payment of $60 million and are potentially eligible to receive additional cash payments up to $165 million upon achievement of certain milestones associated with the development and approval of a drug candidate covered by this agreement. Upon commercialization, Medarex and MBL will also be eligible to receive double-digit royalties on product sales and milestones if certain sales targets are met. In accordance with the co-development agreement between Medarex and MBL, all payments will be divided equally.
The incidence of C. difficile infection (CDI) in the U.S. is rapidly increasing, with rates doubling from 2000 to 2005. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has projected that there will be as many as 750,000 cases of CDI per year by 2010 .
"C. difficile infection is the primary cause of infectious diarrhea in hospitalized elderly patients in developed countries," said Tony Ford-Hutchinson, Ph.D., senior vice president and franchise head, Infectious Diseases and Vaccines, Merck Research Laboratories. "This agreement underscores Merck's ongoing commitment to infectious disease and our strategy of licens
|Contact: Mark Shelton|
University of Massachusetts Medical School