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AVEO enters into a research and exclusive option agreement with Ophthotech for tivozanib (AV-951) for the treatment of ocular diseases
AVEO Oncology, a biopharmaceutical company developing cancer treatments, announced on Nov. 11, 2014 that it has entered into a research and exclusive option agreement with Ophthotech Corporation. The agreement provides Ophthotech an exclusive license to investigate the potential of AVEO’s small-molecule vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) tyrosine kinase inhibitor, tivozanib, outside of Asia for the potential treatment of non-oncologic diseases of the eye.
Ophthotech will pay AVEO an upfront option fee of $500,000 to investigate tivozanib as a potential treatment for non-oncologic diseases of the eye. AVEO may receive up to $8 million in milestone payments if Ophthotech chooses to continue development of the ocular formulation of tivozanib after its initial analysis.
The agreement gives Ophthotech the “exclusive option to obtain additional development and commercialization rights to tivozanib and products containing tivozanib for non-oncologic eye indications in territories outside Asia, subject to certain conditions, including outcomes of a proof of concept clinical trial and the negotiation of a definitive license agreement.” AVEO would receive an option exercise fee of $2 million and may also receive clinical and regulatory-based milestone payments, of up to $50 million, sales-based milestone payments of up to $45 million, and royalties on product sales. All research and development activities and costs would be the responsibility of Ophthotech as well as further development and commercialization activities and costs for tivozanib ocular indications.
"This agreement is another example of our execution against AVEO’s key strategic objective of advancing our pipeline assets through external resources and expertise," stated Tuan Ha-Ngoc, president and chief executive officer of AVEO, in a press release. “We believe the unique properties of tivozanib make it an ideal VEGF inhibitor for potential ocular use, and we are encouraged by Ophthotech’s interest in exploring this potential. This agreement could enable us to realize value for tivozanib in an indication outside of cancer, while retaining oncology rights for further development through additional potential partnerships.”