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Astellas and Cytokinetics in $675 million CK-2127107 alliance

Posted on 29 December 2014

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Cytokinetics and Astellas Pharma announced an amendment to their collaboration agreement focused on the research, development and commercialization of skeletal muscle activators.

The companies have been jointly conducting research and development activities with the objective to advance novel skeletal sarcomere targeted therapies for diseases and medical conditions associated with muscle weakness in non-neuromuscular indications.

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The collaboration has been expanded to enable development of CK-2127107, a fast skeletal troponin activator, in Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) and potentially other neuromuscular indications.

As the companies have agreed, Cytokinetics will conduct a Phase II clinical trial of CK-2127107 in patients with SMA, which is planned to begin in 2015.

Cytokinetics and Astellas will jointly develop and may jointly commercialize CK-2127107 and other fast skeletal troponin activators in neuromuscular indications.

The companies have extended their joint research program focused on the discovery of additional skeletal sarcomere activators through 2016.

Upon execution of the amended agreement, Cytokinetics will receive $55 million from Astellas comprising $30 million as an upfront license fee, $10 million paid for Astellas’ purchase of Cytokinetics’ common stock and $15 million in a milestone payment in connection with the decision made by Astellas to advance CK-2127107 into Phase II clinical development.

In addition, Cytokinetics expects to receive potentially over $20 million payable by Astellas to reimburse Cytokinetics for planned research and development expenses over the next 2 years.

Under the amended agreement, Cytokinetics is eligible to receive over $600 million in pre-commercialization and commercialization milestone payments, of which over $100 million is payable for CK-2127107 in each of SMA and other neuromuscular indications.

The agreed terms also provide for escalating royalties to Cytokinetics with increased sales.

Cytokinetics retains the option to co-fund the development of CK-2127107 in SMA and other neuromuscular indications in exchange for increased milestone payments and royalties and, if Cytokinetics exercises its co-promotion option, Astellas will reimburse Cytokinetics for certain expenses associated with its promotion activities.

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