Swiss-based Vifor Pharma, a Galenica Group company, has gained commercialisation rights for ChemoCentryx’s Avacopan (CCX168) for orphan and rare renal diseases in Asia, including Japan and the Middle East.

As part of an expanded agreement between both companies, which builds on the original licensing agreement that was signed in May last year, ChemoCentryx will retain all rights for avacopan in the US and China.

The orally administered inhibitor of the complement 5a receptor (C5aR) avacopan is currently under a Phase III development for rare renal diseases.

It is also in development for other orphan and rare renal diseases, including C3 glomerulopathy (C3G) and atypical haemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS).

ChemoCentryx president and CEO Thomas Schall said: “The expansion of avacopan territory rights with renal care leader Vifor Pharma, and with ChemoCentryx retaining all US and China rights, expertly positions our rare renal disease portfolio for global commercialisation.

"The expansion of avacopan territory rights … expertly positions our rare renal disease portfolio for global commercialisation."

“We have now harmonised both the avacopan and the subsequent agreement, which we signed in late December for another rare renal asset, CCX140, in our highly productive Kidney Health Alliance with Vifor Pharma.”

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ChemoCentryx will receive $20m in return for the new rights in addition to tiered double-digit royalties on potential net sales.

Under the original licensing agreement, the company is eligible for $85m.

ChemoCentryx’s avacopan is not limited to anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic auto-antibody (ANCA)-associated vasculitis (AAV).

AAV is a systemic disease presented as a kidney dysfunction and is currently treated with courses of non-specific immuno-suppressants combined with corticosteroid administration.