31. July 2009 15:42
Alcon has entered into a five-year research agreement with AstraZeneca that gives Alcon exclusive ophthalmic drug discovery and potential development rights to AstraZeneca’s compound library.
The two companies are targeting the development of drugs to treat sight-threatening conditions such as glaucoma, wet and dry age-related macular degeneration and other retinal diseases, as well as ocular allergy, dry eye and other inflammatory eye conditions.
“Alcon and AstraZeneca share a common goal: to use leading-edge science to deliver medicines that will benefit patients,” said Jan Lundberg, AstraZeneca’s Executive Vice President of Global Discovery Research. “We are constantly looking for new opportunities to maximise our strong early pipeline, and this collaboration is proof of its value beyond the therapy areas for which AstraZeneca is renowned.”
Under the terms of the agreement, Alcon obtains immediate access to thousands of AstraZeneca compounds in a variety of drug classes. AstraZeneca will hand over development and regulatory documentation associated with each compound as relevant to ophthalmology.
Alcon will perform and fund all R&D activities to move selected compounds forward. Individual licence agreements will be negotiated on a case-by-case basis for any compound that moves into clinical development, including regulatory milestone payments and royalties on product sales.
“This strategic partnership represents an extraordinary opportunity to bring Alcon’s global leadership in the field of ophthalmology together with AstraZeneca’s world-class basic research capability to advance treatments in eye care,” said Kevin Buehler, Alcon’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “I believe this partnership will not only benefit both parties, but will also lead to new therapies that reduce the incidence of blindness around the world.”