December 21 Notes: Altus Enters into Agreement with Genentech, GSK Acquires Praecis Pharmaceuticals, Novasep Signs Manufacturing Alliance with Solvay, more

December 21, 2006
Pharmaceutical Technology Editors
ePT--the Electronic Newsletter of Pharmaceutical Technology

Altus, GSK, Novasep, More

Company Notes

Cambridge, MA (Dec. 20)-Altus Pharmaceuticals Inc. (www.altus.com) entered into a license agreement with Genentech, Inc. (South San Francisco, www.gene.com) to develop, manufacture, and commercialize Altus’ product candidate "ALTU-238," in North America with an option for a global agreement. ALTU-238 is a once-per-week formulation of human growth hormone, which uses Altus’ proprietary protein crystallization and formulation technology. Under the North American agreement, Genentech will make a $15-million upfront payment to Altus and take a $15-million equity interest in Altus. Altus may receive an additional $140 million based on reaching certain development and commercialization milestones. If Genentech excercises the global option, Altus could receive payments of more than $110 million, comprised of upfront and milestone payments.

London (Dec. 21)-GlaxoSmithKline plc (www.gsk.com) agreed to acquire Praecis Pharmaceuticals Inc. (Waltham, MA, www.praecis.com) for $54.8 million. Praecis is involved in chemical synthesis and screening technology for drug discovery. The deal is expected to close in the first quarter of 2007.

Pompey, France (Dec. 11)-Novasep Synthesis (www.novasep.com) signed a five-year manufacturing alliance with Solvay Pharmaceuticals (Brussels, www.solvay.com). The deal includes exclusive synthesis of two of Solvay's active pharmaceutical ingredients, pinaverium bromide and betahistine.

Tulsa, OK (Dec. 4)-Oracle Packaging (www.oraclepackaging.com) has acquired TOLAS Healthcare Packaging (Feasterville, PA), a specialist in packaging using medical-grade "Tyvek"; reinforced and surgical kraft papers; laminated and coextruded films; and multilayer foils.

New York, NY (Dec. 20)-Pfizer Inc. (www.pfizer.com) completed the sale of its Pfizer Consumer Healthcare business to Johnson & Johnson (New Brunswick, NJ, www.jnj.com) for $16.6 billion or about $13.5 billion in after-tax proceeds.

People Notes

New York, NY (Dec. 18)-Pfizer (www.pfizer.com) CEO Jeffrey B. Kindler assumed the additional post of Chairman of the Board, succeeding former CEO and Chairman Hank McKennell.

Paris (Dec. 14)-Sanofi-Aventis (www.sanofi-aventis.com) named Gerard Le Fur chief executive officer effective Jan. 1, 2007, fulfilling the company's announced plan of separating the chairman and CEO positions. Jean-François Dehecq remains chairman of the board.