AcelRx Pharmaceuticals has executed a definitive merger agreement to acquire Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals in a stock-based transaction.

Under the agreement, Tetraphase stockholders will receive 0.6303 of a share of AcelRx common stock for each share of Tetraphase common stock. The deal is worth around $14.4m.

Furthermore, the terms of the agreement cover one contingent value right (CVR), which will provide aggregate payments of up to $12.5m upon reaching Xerava net sales milestones beginning in 2021.

Xerava is a tetracycline developed by Tetraphase for the treatment of serious and life-threatening infections.

The deal, approved by both parties’ boards of directors, is expected to close in the second quarter of the year.

Tetraphase and AcelRx also signed a separate agreement to jointly promote Xerava to treat complicated intra-abdominal infections (cIAI) and Dsuvia for acute pain in medically supervised settings.

This agreement will allow the companies to immediately benefit from the promotion of several products, along with access to respective customer networks.

The combined sales team is expected to cover 70% of each party’s originally targeted hospitals.

Tetraphase Pharmaceuticals president and CEO Larry Edwards said: “This transaction is an important move forward for Tetraphase and more importantly, for Xerava and the patients who need this treatment.

“We continue to believe that Xerava is a key addition to the hospital anti-infective armamentarium, and believe that together with AcelRx we will be able to more effectively bring new treatments to patients in healthcare institutions.”

Following the closure of the deal, Tetraphase will become a privately held company.

AcelRx Pharmaceuticals CEO Vince Angotti said: “We look forward to integrating Xerava and the existing Tetraphase commercial infrastructure with our own as we strengthen our position on promoting innovative products to healthcare institutions allowing patients access to new and improved treatments.”