AstraZeneca has acquired all of Biovitrum's rights to its leptin modulator program aimed at treating obesity. Biovitrum will receive from AstraZeneca an upfront payment of $9 million and milestone payments contingent on development progress and sales, as well as single-digit percentage royalties. If a product is approved, the agreement caps out at a total of $280 million in upfront and milestone payments to Biovitrum. The leptin modulator program is currently in the preclinical phase.
Björn Wallmark, AZ's vice president, Cardiovascular & Gastrointestinal Research, said, "AstraZeneca is committed to working towards finding new solutions to health problems that stem from diabetes and obesity, two risk factors for cardiovascular disease. We are pleased that we have obtained this discovery program. It increases the strength of our portfolio of compounds that can potentially lead to medicines that meet the needs of patients."
Peter Edman, chief scientific office of Biovitrum, said, "We are very happy that this exciting and completely novel approach to treat obese patients will continue to be developed through AstraZeneca, a company with a long heritage and strong presence in the cardiovascular disease area. We are sure that AstraZeneca will continue to develop the opportunity in a capable way and potentially add new treatment options for obese patients."