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AMAG Pharma closes acquisition of Perosphere Pharmaceuticals

AMAG Pharmaceuticals Inc. completed the acquisition of Perosphere Pharmaceuticals Inc., gaining rights to a patent-protected developmental stage antidote for certain anti-blood clotting drugs.

Waltham, Mass.-based AMAG paid Perosphere equity holders $40 million in cash, net of about $10 million in debt which Perosphere owed to AMAG under a convertible note. AMAG also paid off $12 million of Perosphere's outstanding term loan and assumed $6.2 million in other liabilities upon the closing of the deal.

The acquisition of the privately held biopharmaceutical company gives AMAG global rights to ciraparantag, Perosphere's antidote for certain anti-blood clotting drugs, which was granted the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's fast-track review designation in April 2015 and is protected under a patent through 2034.

Perosphere is developing Ciraparantag for patients treated with novel oral anticoagulants or low-molecular-weight heparin — blood-thinning medicines that prevent the occurrence or increase in unwanted blood clots, with an associated risk of uncontrolled bleeding. Ciraparantag acts as an anticoagulant reversal agent that re-establishes the body's ability to form clots.

AMAG said clinical trials have shown that ciraparantag was well tolerated. The company plans to hold discussions with the FDA later in the year to confirm the design of a phase 3 program, which is expected to include phase 3a trials in healthy volunteers followed by a phase 3b/4 trial in patients. The phase 3a trials are expected to begin in the second half of the year.

The phase 3 program will be partially funded by an undisclosed global pharmaceutical company, subject to achievement of certain clinical milestones. Also under the phase 3 program, AMAG plans to use an automated coagulometer — an analyzer to test the coagulation efficiency of blood — being developed by Perosphere Technologies Inc.

Perosphere stockholders can receive up to $365 million in future milestone payments. They can get up to $140 million in regulatory milestones payments, including $40 million upon approval by the European Medicines Agency, if the final U.S. label on the product has no boxed warning. The remaining $225 million is linked to the achievement of certain sales-related milestones.

AMAG said the first sales milestone payment of $20 million would be payable upon achieving annual net sales of $100 million.