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Callisto Pharmaceuticals has restructured its license agreement with Genzyme Corporation for the cancer treatment Atiprimod (azaspirane).
In August 2002, Callisto’s subsidiary, Synergy, bought exclusive rights to develop, manufacture and commercialise Atiprimod from rival drug firm AnorMED.
AnorMED was then acquired by Genzyme in November 2006, and the restructured agreement eliminates all milestone payments and reduces royalties owed to Genzyme to single digits.
In return for the reduced future payments, Callisto has agreed to pay an undisclosed upfront fee in 2008.
Gabriele Cerrone, chairman of Callisto, said: “This restructured licensing agreement significantly improves the potential economic upside value for Atiprimod and puts us in a stronger position to further develop and commercialise the product.
“We recently completed enrolment in our Atiprimod phase II trial in advanced carcinoid cancer patients and we expect to complete an interim analysis of the data by the end of the first quarter of this year.
“We believe this new agreement with Genzyme will provide substantial help in obtaining financing for a potential phase III trial.”
Studies have shown Atiprimod is antiangiogenic, can inhibit secretion of VEGF and IL-6, and inhibit phosphorylation of key kinases involved in tumour progression and survival including Akt and STAT3.
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