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Key contract in drugs sector

ProStrakan secures $70m rights deal with AstraZeneca

Tom StratfordBorders based drugs business ProStrakan Group has signed an initial $70 million deal to acquire the distribution rights to a drug developed by pharmaceuticals giant AstraZeneca.

The company will make this first payment to sell and develop Moventig, a laxative, in the European Union, Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

It is the first once-a-day oral drug of its type approved in Europe for the treatment of constipation in adult patients who have had an inadequate response to laxatives.

ProStrakan will make additional payments based on its growth in certain European markets, and will pay AstraZeneca tiered double-digit royalties on sales as well as sales milestones.

In line with AstraZeneca’s ongoing interest in Moventig globally, certain strategic decisions will be made jointly between AstraZeneca and ProStrakan in the European territory. The transaction does not include the transfer of any AstraZeneca employees or facilities.  The drug is currently available in the UK, Ireland, Germany, the Nordics, Austria and Switzerland.

Luke Miels, an executive vice president at AstraZeneca, said: “This agreement is in line with our strategy to focus our resources within our three main therapy areas while unlocking value from the important medicines in our portfolio.

“ProStrakan’s significant expertise in the area of pain medication will ensure patients across Europe benefit from a first-in-class treatment. It complements our commitment along with Daiichi Sankyo to build the market and co-commercialise this important medicine in the US.”

Tom Stratford, chief executive of ProStrakan, said: “Moventig is an excellent fit for our oncology and pain-focused sales teams across Europe and opens up broader opportunities to serve both cancer and non-cancer chronic pain patients with this innovative, first-in-class therapy.

“This important medicine will complement our existing breakthrough cancer pain products, Abstral and PecFent, and, through our existing contact with oncology and pain specialists across the continent as well as other planned physician groups, I am confident that we can make Moventig available as an option to a broad range of patients who suffer opioid-induced constipation.”

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