Millennium Pharmaceuticals Inc. got the clinical and regulatory infrastructure it wanted out of its joint venture for Campath with Ilex Oncology Inc., which resulted from MLNM's 1999 acquisition of LeukoSite Inc. But MLNM last week ended the joint venture after failing to restructure the deal to enable it to take part in the commercialization of the drug. Ironically, as a result of the deal's restructuring, ILXO received the marketing rights that MLNM wanted.

The partners announced that ILXO will acquire MLNM's equity interest in their 50-50 joint venture, Millennium and Ilex Partners L.P. The venture originally was formed in 1997 by ILXO and LeukoSite, which had acquired the rights to Campath, to develop and market the anti-CD52 monoclonal antibody for chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL). The antibody originally had been developed by Cambridge Pathology, the department of pathology at Cambridge University (see BioCentury, May 14).