Biocon Ltd, India's top-listed biotechnology company, said it signed an agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb Co under which the U.S. drugmaker will have the option to get the worldwide licence to its oral insulin drug programme.
Bristol Myers can choose to assume full responsibility for the development of the drug IN-105, if its mid-stage trial is successful.
Biocon, which has been looking to partner the drug for nearly two years, said it would receive a licence fee as well as milestone payments and royalties based on commercial sales of the drug outside India.
It will retain the rights to IN-105 in India. Financial terms of the deal were not available.
Currently, there are no insulin tablets available and patients with diabetes who need insulin – a naturally occurring protein that controls blood sugar – must inject it.
Earlier this year, Pfizer scrapped a deal to sell injectable insulin products made by Biocon.
Biocon shares, which rose more than 4 percent in the previous session, were down 0.4 percent on Friday, while the broader market was up 0.3 percent.
Company INFO More on Biocon
Stocks More on Biocon
Biocon inks pact with Bristol-Myers for insulin drug candidate
New Delhi,(PTI): Biotechnology major Biocon today said it has entered into an agreement with Bristol-Myers Squibb for it's oral insulin new drug candidate IN- 105.
Under the terms of the option agreement, Bristol- Myers Squibb will have the right to exercise an option to obtain an exclusive worldwide licence to the programme.
It will, however, conduct the clinical trials according to a pre-agreed development programme up to the completion of Phase II, as per the agreement, Biocon said.
If the US based company exercises the option to licence IN -105, following the successful completion of Phase II trial, the domestic firm will receive a licence fee in addition to potential regulatory and commercial milestone payments and royalties on commercial sales outside India, it added.
Biocon said it will retain the exclusive rights to IN-105 in India.
Bristol-Myers Squibb will assume full responsibility for the development programme, including all development and commercialisation activities outside India, it added.
Commenting on the development, Biocon MD and Chairman Kiran-Mazumdar Shaw said: "This agreement is one huge step closer to realising the dream of bringing oral insulin to market".
Diabetes is a chronic disease that affects about 350 million people worldwide and it is estimated that direct and indirect costs of the disease to overall healthcare system amounts to over USD 650 billion worldwide, Biocon said.
Shares of Biocon were today trading at Rs 304.65 per scrip on BSE, down 0.70 per cent from its previous close.