Ariad Pharmaceuticals has agreed to sell its European operations and out-license the commercial rights to Iclusig in Europe to the US-based biopharmaceutical firm Incyte.
Under the deal, Incyte will make a $140m upfront payment to Ariad plus pay royalties of up to 50% on European sales of Iclusig.
Incyte will also take over Ariad’s team of 125 employees in Europe.
The primary target of Iclusig kinase inhibitor is BCR-ABL, an abnormal tyrosine kinase that is expressed in chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) and Philadelphia-chromosome positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph+ ALL).
Iclusig is approved in Europe to treat CML and Ph+ ALL patients who are resistant to or intolerant of certain second generation BCR-ABL inhibitors and all patients who have the T315I mutation.
Ariad Pharmaceuticals president and CEO Paris Panayiotopoulos said: "The decision to divest our European operations and out-license the commercial rights to Iclusig in Europe is one of the key outcomes of our ongoing strategic review."
Incyte CEO Hervé Hoppenot said: "The acquisition of Ariad’s European operations is a unique and strategic opportunity for Incyte, which will further establish our medical and commercial footprint in Europe."
The acquisition will allow Incyte to speed up the expansion of its European organization and optimize the potential of future product launches in Europe.
Incyte is engaged in the discovery, development and commercialization of therapeutics, primarily for oncology.
The company’s first commercial product, Jakafi, is approved in the US to treat patients with intermediate or high-risk myelofibrosis and for patients with polycythemia vera who have had an inadequate response to or are intolerant of hydroxyurea.