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Zealand extends Lixisenatide licence with S-A

Zealand Pharma and sanofi-aventis have agreed to extend the global licensing agreement of type 2 diabetes treatment, Lixisenatide

Zealand Pharma and sanofi-aventis (S-A) have agreed to extend the global licensing agreement of type 2 diabetes treatment, Lixisenatide (AVE 0010/ ZP10).

The new agreement will see S-A take on the development and commercialisation of Lixisenatide in combination with Lantus (insulin glargine). Lantus is a recombinant human insulin analogue and is S-A's best selling treatment with 2009 net sales of over €3bn.

S-A's phase III trial for the combined use of Lantus and Lixisenatide is expected to begin later this year.

Financial details of the agreement were not specified, though Zealand will receive payments for the achievement of certain milestones for the Lantus/ Lixisenatide combination product.

Danish-based biopharmaceutical company, Zealand, initially out-licensed Lixisenatide to S-A on a global basis in 2003 with S-A responsible for all further clinical development of the drug.

Lixisenatide is a glucagon-like-peptide-1 (GLP-1) receptor for the treatment of type 2 diabetes. Regulatory filings for the product are expected to take place in 2011 in Europe and 2012 in the US.

David Solomon, CEO and president of Zealand Pharma, said: "This agreement not only strengthens Zealand's financial position, allowing us to progress our other pipeline programmes, but also provides significant excitement globally around a superior treatment for patients suffering with type 2 diabetes. We look forward to the ongoing clinical development of Lixisenatide and of the Lantus/ Lixisenatide combination product."

8th June 2010

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