Pennsylvania based Strongbridge Biopharma has bought the US rights of Taro Pharmaceutical’s periodic paralysis drug Keveyis (dichlorphenamide) for $8.5 million.
Keveyis was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) last year to treat primary hyperkalemic and hypokalemic periodic paralysis. It was granted orphan designation status up to August 2022.
Hyperkalemic and hypokalemic periodic paralysis are part of a group of rare hereditary neuromuscular disorders. Patients diagnosed with these diseases are prone to muscle weakness or paralysis.
Matthew Pauls, president and chief executive officer of Strongbridge said: “The acquisition of KEVEYIS is transformational for Strongbridge and expands our rare disease portfolio to include neuromuscular diseases.
“We look forward to working closely with the Primary Periodic Paralysis community to help make a meaningful difference in the lives of those affected by this rare and underserved disease.”
As per the terms of the agreement, the payment from Strongbridge Biopharma will be made upfront in two installments.
Keveyis manufacturer Taro would also get additional payments in the future depending on certain sales unit milestones of the periodic paralysis drug.
Strongbridge is planning to commercially launch Keveyis periodic paralysis drug in the US in April 2017.
Under an exclusive supply agreement, the Israeli based Taro agreed to continue to manufacture its periodic paralysis medicine for Strongbridge at least till April 2017 in line with the FDA’s approval of the orphan designation status for Keveyis. The deal is subject to select commercial terms and conditions which includes minimum supply purchases, said Taro.
Kal Sundaram, Chief Executive Officer of Taro said: “We are proud of our work in making Keveyis the first FDA-approved treatment option for people living with primary periodic paralysis.
“In maintaining our commitment to patients, we have selected a partner in this sale with the expertise to reach the patients and physicians needed to improve patient outcomes and deepen understanding of the disease.”
Since May 2016, Taro had stopped commercialization of Keveyis, and has instead been supplying the periodic paralysis drug to patients through a compassionate use program.