NicOx SA of Sophia Antipolis, France, signed an extension of its March 2006 collaboration agreement with Pfizer Inc which gives the US pharma company the exclusive right to apply NicOx’s nitric oxide-donating technology to drug discovery research in ophthalmology.
The one-year extension of the research phase of the agreement will earn NicOx Euro 3 million in research funding in March 2008, and prolongs Pfizer’s option to license resulting compounds until May 2009.
The joint NicOx-Pfizer research team has been working on several separate projects, which have involved identifying and testing different classes of nitric oxide-donating compounds that could become treatments for eye diseases. In the most advanced project, encouraging results have been observed for various compounds in in vitro and in vivo preclinical models of a prevalent eye disease.
Under the terms of the original agreement Pfizer paid an upfront technology license fee of Euro 5 million and made a Euro 15 million equity investment. Pfizer has also paid NicOx Euro 6 million in research funding since then.
Overall, the agreement has total potential milestone payments in excess of Euro 300 million, of which Euro102 million would be earned on development and launch of the first compound.
An earlier collaboration agreement resulted in the development of PF-03187207, a glaucoma treatment, which is currently in Phase II.