TxCell SA and Ferring International Center SA have announced the signing of a collaboration, option, development and license agreement potentially worth up to EUR 76 million plus royalties subject to the achievement of milestones.
In the agreement, TxCell has granted Ferring an option to acquire an exclusive worldwide license for the development, manufacture and marketing of TxCell’s lead candidate Ovasave for the treatment of IBD, including Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis.
TxCell will undertake a forthcoming phase IIb study with Ovasave in refractory Crohn’s disease. Ferring will then be responsible for the conduct and funding of further development and commercialization after the exercise of the option. There are currently around 100,000 refractory Crohn’s patients per year in Europe and in the US alone for whom there is no therapeutic treatment.
Initially, TxCell will receive EUR 3 million for the acquisition of the option by Ferring, of which EUR 1 million was paid upon signature of the agreement and the remainder will be paid depending on the progress of the Ovasave phase IIb trial planned to start in the second half of 2014.
TxCell will also be eligible in the future in the event of the exercise of the option to development, commercial and manufacturing milestones and payments up to a total of EUR 73 million. TxCell will also receive tiered royalties up to double digits on future sales of Ovasave.
“This agreement between TxCell and Ferring is a key milestone for TxCell,” said Damian Marron, CEO, TxCell. “The alliance of TxCell’s unique personalized cellular immunotherapy technology with Ferring’s renowned expertise in IBD will ensure that TxCell’s lead product, Ovasave, can be developed effectively and marketed globally to the sufferers of refractory Crohn’s disease. The agreement underlines the value of TxCell’s ASTrIA platform and the quality of the work of TxCell’s research, development and manufacturing teams”.
“This agreement reinforces Ferring’s continued commitment to bringing innovative therapies to patients suffering from gastrointestinal diseases. Ovasave represents an exciting potential addition to our current gastroenterology product portfolio,” said Pascal Danglas, Executive Vice President, Clinical and Product Development and member of the Executive Board of Ferring International Center SA.