Eli Lilly and Co. has signed a definitive merger agreement to acquire Avid Radiopharmaceuticals, Inc., a developer of novel molecular imaging compounds, for an upfront payment of $300 million. Avid's lead program, florbetapir F 18 (18F-AV-45), is a molecular imaging agent in development for detecting the presence of amyloid plaque in the brain, a defining pathology of Alzheimer's disease. A marketing application for florbetapir was recently submitted to FDA. Avid stockholders will also be eligible to receive as much as $500 million in additional payments based on potential regulatory and commercial milestones for florbetapir. The acquisition of Avid also provides Lilly with a diagnostics development platform covering several disease areas, including Parkinson's disease and diabetes.
"The acquisition of Avid Radiopharmaceuticals aligns well with Lilly's innovation-based strategy, offers a potential near-term revenue opportunity, leverages our neuroscience expertise and will immediately bolster our diagnostics capabilities," said John Lechleiter, Ph.D., Lilly chairman and chief executive officer. "We look forward to partnering with Avid's experts during the regulatory process for florbetapir, and are intent on gaining FDA approval for this promising diagnostic intended to help clinicians and researchers identify the presence of beta-amyloid plaque in the brain."
"We are very excited to join the great scientific team at Lilly and continue our work to develop new molecular imaging agents capable of changing the medical management of significant chronic human diseases," said Daniel M. Skovronsky, M.D., Ph.D., Avid's founder and chief executive officer. "We've had a productive and long-standing relationship with Lilly, and believe in their approach to providing improved outcomes for individual patients."