Neuromed Pharmaceuticals Ltd. and Merck & Co., Inc. announced that they have signed a research collaboration and license agreement to research, develop and commercialize novel compounds for the treatment of pain and other neurological disorders, including Neuromed's lead compound, NMED-160, which is currently in Phase II development for the treatment of pain.
Under the terms of the agreement, Neuromed grants Merck an exclusive worldwide license to research, develop and commercialize NMED-160 and other compounds that selectively target the N-type calcium channel. Merck will make a $25 million initial cash payment to Neuromed. Neuromed will also receive research funding from Merck for two years as part of the collaborative research program, including the option to renew for an additional two years. Merck is responsible for all development costs and activities.
The successful development and launch of NMED-160 for an initial single indication on a worldwide basis would trigger milestone payments totaling $202 million. Milestones could increase to approximately $450 million if a further indication for NMED-160 is developed and approved and a further compound is developed and approved for two indications. Neuromed would also receive royalties on worldwide sales of NMED-160 and any additional compounds developed under this agreement. Additional milestone payments would be payable should further compounds be developed. Further financial terms were not disclosed.