Boston, June 18, 2012- R-Pharm announced today that it has entered into a licensing agreement with MSD, known in the United States and Canada as merck (Merck – Co. Whitehouse Station, NJ, USA) for the rights to a new test procedure, hepatitis C once a day protease inhibitors, narlaprevir. The agreement provides R-Pharm with the opportunity to conduct late clinical trials in Russia, which is one of the objectives of the Russian government`s Pharma 2020 initiative. Under the agreement, R-Pharm obtains the rights to develop and market the narlaprevir in Russia and in the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). R-Pharm pays MSD (through a subsidiary), a down payment and undisclosed royalties for the sale of narlaprevir. MSD retains the right to promote narlaprevir in these regions and retains rights for the candidate outside Russia and CIS countries. “The agreement between MSD and R-Pharm is a good example of the cooperation between a leading global pharmaceutical company and a leading Russian pharmaceutical company to advance the health care of the Russian people,” said Vasily Ignatiev, CEO of R-Pharm. “This agreement was achieved with the support of the Russian Ministry of Industry and Trade in close alliance with the federal programme. The strategic cooperation between R-Pharm and MSD will enable Russian patients to have access to new medicines in the field of unmet health and high social demand. Narlaprevir is a second-generation NS3-serine protease inhibitor developed by MSD.
In a Phase 2a clinical study, narlaprevir was given a robust decrease in the hepatitis C virus in the blood and high persistent viral response rates, followed by standard treatment in treatment-infected patients and HCV-infected patients who were treatment-naïve. “MSD is pleased that this agreement will allow R-Pharm to continue the development of this potentially important technology for the treatment of hepatitis C, an area with significant unmet needs in Russia,” said Kevin Ali, President of Emerging Markets, MSD. “This unique technology transfer agreement is in line with the Russian government`s desire to create a stronger local innovative pharmaceutical industry to stimulate economic growth in this sector. The development of narlaprevir will allow R-Pharm to gain deep experience in late-stage clinical trials – the crucial phase of drug development. If a community organization, after reading the agreement, is interested in becoming a signatory to the CBA, you should send a letter of interest to NETRIS Pharma SAS, a private biopharmaceutical company at the clinical stage, Developed on the basis of the biology of addictive receptors, it announced today that it has entered into a clinical cooperation agreement with MSD to examine the safety, clinical and biological activity of NP137 with the anti-PD-1 treatment of MSD, KEYTRUDA® (pembrolizumab), in patients with locally advanced/metastatic tumors.