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HIV drug royalties sold for $160m

Vertex Pharmaceuticals has sold its rights to future royalties for two HIV drugs to GlaxoSmithKline
Vertex Pharmaceuticals has sold its rights to future royalties for two HIV drugs to GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

Under the terms of the one-time cash payment, Vertex will not receive any royalties for future sales of HIV drugs Lexiva and Agenerase.

"The sale of this non-core financial asset provides us with significant capital and strengthens our financial position to support investment into key programs and future initiatives for our business," said Ian Smith, executive vice president and chief financial officer of Vertex Pharmaceuticals.

"In particular, this transaction will provide us with additional capital to support and advance our leadership position in hepatitis C drug development."

Vertex reported at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of the Liver (EASL) in April 2008 that results from early trials show that its hepatitis C drug, Telaprevir, used in combination with two other drugs, is a promising therapy.

6th June 2008

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