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The company purchased Cirara from Remedy Pharmaceuticals for $120 million.
Biogen purchased Remedy Pharmaceuticals’ Cirara (intravenous glyburide), a Phase III candidate for the treatment of large hemispheric infarction. In a May 15, 2017, press release on the purchase, Biogen said it will make an upfront payment of $120 million to Remedy for the drug, with the option for additional milestone payments and royalties.
Large hemispheric infarction (LHI) is a severe form of ischemic stroke where brain swelling (cerebral edema) often leads to a disproportionately large share of stroke-related morbidity and mortality, the company wrote in a statement. In pre-clinical studies, Cirara has been shown to block SUR1-TRPM4 channels that mediate stroke-related brain swelling. Clinical proof-of-concept studies have demonstrated the potential of Cirara to reduce brain swelling, disability, and the risk of death in patients with LHI. FDA has granted Cirara both Orphan Drug Designation and Fast Track Designation.
According to Biogen, this transaction is part of the company’s broader efforts to build a portfolio of treatments for acute ischemic stroke. The company is currently conducting Phase IIb studies to determine whether its monoclonal antibody natalizumab can help patients with acute ischemic stroke improve functional outcomes by limiting brain inflammation in the post-stroke period.