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Horizon, Medical Need Europe ink $35M distribution deal for urea disorder drugs

Horizon Pharma Public Ltd. Co. has sold the rights to genetic disorder drugs Ravicti and Ammonaps outside of North America and Japan for $35 million to Medical Need Europe AB, a part of the Immedica Group.

Previously, Horizon Pharma distributed Ravicti and Ammonaps, called Buphenyl in the U.S., through a commercial partner in Europe and other non-U.S. markets.

Ravicti and Buphenyl are used to treat certain inborn urea cycle disorders, or UCD, a genetic disorder that makes removing waste products after digesting proteins from the body difficult. Typically, the nitrogen produced by the breakdown of proteins is converted to a compound called urea and removed from the body, but in UCD the nitrogen accumulates in the form of ammonia.

Horizon Pharma said in a Jan. 4 8-K filing that it will retain rights to the two medicines in North America and Japan. The company also said it will no longer list sales from Ravicti and Ammonaps outside of North America and Japan in its revenue.

Ravicti was recently approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat infants younger than two months old with UCD.

Swedish Orphan Biovitrum AB in 2016 acquired exclusive rights from Horizon Pharma to distribute Ravicti for five years in European countries, including the U.K., Germany, France, Italy and Spain. The agreement also granted Swedish Orphan Biovitrum exclusive rights to Ammonaps in the same European countries and certain Middle Eastern territories.