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GSK and Mpex in potentially lucrative deal

US-based Mpex Pharmaceuticals stands to make substantial financial gains as part of a new development deal it has signed with GlaxoSmithKline
US-based Mpex Pharmaceuticals stands to make substantial financial gains as part of a new development deal it has signed with GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

GSK will make an upfront payment of $8.5m to Mpex in addition to a $6.5m equity financing commitment. The American drug manufacturer is now in a position to receive anywhere between $200m and $250m in regulatory and commercial milestone payments. 

The worldwide strategic alliance between the two firms is aimed at furthering their combined programme of discovery, development and commercialisation of novel medicines for the treatment of bacterial diseases.

"We are optimistic that combining our efforts with an industry leader such as GSK will maximise our chances of success in developing a portfolio of products," said Daniel Burgess, president and CEO of Mpex.

"We believe this collaboration has the potential to lead to a number of important new anti-infective products."

The deal effectively gives GSK the rights to Mpex's portfolio of efflux pump inhibitors (EPI), which are used to enhance the performance of antibiotics and to counteract drug resistant bacteria. GSK will further develop and commercialise EPIs produced by Mpex on a worldwide basis.

Zhi Hong, senior vice-president of GSK's Infectious Diseases Centre of Excellence for Drug Discovery (ID CEDD), explained that R&D needs to address the growing threat of bacterial infections and drug resistance. He said that EPIs have the potential to enhance existing antibiotics and enable development of the company's pipeline for this area.

"Antibiotic discovery has faced tremendous challenges with the discovery of only two new classes of antibiotics over the last three decades," he said.

"Mpex has a first rate entrepreneurial R&D team with experience in antibacterial research."

17th June 2008

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