Novartis Gains Rights to Antibiotic with Acquisition of Protez

June 11, 2008
BioPharm International Editors

Novartis (Basel, Switzerland) will acquire Protez Pharmaceuticals (Malvern, PA) for up to $400 million in cash.

Novartis (Basel, Switzerland) will acquire Protez Pharmaceuticals (Malvern, PA) for up to $400 million in cash. After the acquisition, Protez will become a stand-alone subsidiary of Novartis, maintaining its operations in Malvern, Pennsylvania.

The agreement provides Novartis with Protez’s research expertise and product pipeline including the North American and European rights to its lead product candidate PZ-601, an injectable antibiotic in the class of agents known as carbapenems. In 2005, Protez entered an exclusive licensing agreement with its originator, Dainippon Sumitomo Pharma Co., Ltd. (DSP, Osaka, Japan), which has expertise in carbapenem research and development through meropenem, to develop and commercialize PZ-601 in North America and Europe. Since then, Protez, in collaboration with DSP, advanced the novel antibiotic to Phase 2 human clinical trials.

Antibiotics in the carbapenem class are useful in treating serious and often life-threatening infections caused by Gram-negative and Gram-positive bacteria. PZ-601 has been shown to have a broad spectrum of activity that could offer better coverage over existing injectable antibiotics, especially multidrug resistant bacteria, including MRSA.

Novartis release

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