Bristol-Myers Squibb and Oncolys BioPharma, a privately-held biotechnology company based in Japan, have signed a definitive agreement under which BMS will acquire exclusive worldwide rights to manufacture, develop and commercialize festinavir, a once-a-day, oral nucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor (NRTI) in Phase II development for HIV.
Oncolys is eligible to receive as much as $286 million including upfront, development, regulatory, and sales milestone payments, as well as royalties on worldwide product sales.
“Bristol-Myers Squibb has been dedicated to helping patients prevail over HIV for more than two decades and is committed to the ongoing discovery, development and delivery of medicines to fight HIV/AIDS globally,” said Brian Daniels, senior vice president, development at BMS. “The profile of festinavir offers the possibility of improvement in the safety of long-term HIV treatment, an area of significant unmet medical need.”
Yasuo Urata, president and chief executive officer of Oncolys BioPharma, said, “I’m honored to have completed this license agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb for the development and commercialization of festinavir. For many years I have been working for the development of medicines in the fight against HIV/AIDS, and I’m convinced that festinavir has the possibility to be a potent and effective NRTI with a promising resistance profile. Also festinavir’s once-daily dosage is essential for treating HIV patients worldwide.”