Abbott Laboratories has acquired an investigational kidney drug from Denmark-based Action Pharma for $110m.
AP214 is a first-in-class melanocortin peptide agonist being developed to prevent acute kidney injury associated with major cardiac surgery, targeting inflammation and apoptosis caused by a lack of blood flow.
Following Action's announcement of encouraging Phase 2b top-line results of the drug, Abbott has pounced to acquire AP214 and now plans to follow up with a further Phase 2b study later in 2012.
Denmark-based Zealand Pharma will also benefit from the sale, receiving an $11m payment and single-digit royalties on future sales, after they licensed technology to Action used in the development of the drug.
Action will receive the $110m in a one-off cash payment and will not be eligible for any future payments or royalties.
AP214 will add to Abbott's pipeline of investigational kidney drugs, which currently comprises bardoxolone, used to treat chronic kidney disease, and atrasentan, used in the treatment of diabetic kidney disease.
John Leonard, Abbott's pharmaceuticals research and development senior vice president, said that AP214 will complement and broaden Abbott's late stage renal care pipeline, building on the company's existing experience in treating kidney disease.
"Clinical experience with AP214 in cardiac surgery patients suggests that it has the potential to be the first compound specifically approved to prevent acute kidney injury, a long-standing unmet need in the medical community," added Leonard.